January 2017
Remember that all funds raised in L.A. stay in L.A. at ASLA . . .
"Welcome to 2017" - Message from the President
Although 2016 was a difficult year in many respects, it was a year of significant accomplishment for the Autism Society of Los Angeles.  With the leadership of our Executive Director, Kim Sinclair, we made significant progress on our journey to increase the impact ASLA has on the community.  Key accomplishments in 2016 include:
  • 2016 Self-Determination Conference
  • Reimagine Autism Awards Luncheon
  • Camp Navin - Residential Camp for Young Adults
  • LAPD Autism Awareness Training - Expanded to include jail personnel
  • Project AutTrain - Training for Medical personnel in the community
  • Kick-off of a Self-Advocate Speaker Bureau 
  • Town Hall for Improving Special Education in Schools

In 2016, ASLA also focused on improving its performance as a non-profit organization.  Key efforts included reducing overhead expenses, improving organizational governance and becoming a more professional organization.  Our volunteers made tremendous contributions last year. I want to specifically thank Judy Mark and our Government Relations Committee for their tireless efforts. 2016 also marked a year of transition for our Board of Directors. Mari-Anne Kehler assumed the important role of Vice President, and head of our nominating committee.  As a result of her efforts, ASLA is thrilled to introduce five new board members:
  • Enrique Duarte
  • Felicia Ford
  • Bita Kazemini
  • Victor Lira
  • Rubi Saldana
ASLA starts 2017 with a board that is larger, more capable and much more diverse than last year.  With the inclusion of Self-Advocates Enrique Duarte and Christine Motokane, and board members representing a variety of backgrounds and geographic areas of Los Angeles, we hope to more accurately represent the disability community.

It is with great excitement that we start 2017.  Key areas of focus this year will include partnering with other non-profits to improve service delivery to those in the community and full implementation of the Self-Determination law.  Our initiatives are only made possible through the generous contributions by our sponsors, donors, and members - Thank you! Please join our efforts by clicking the link below to become a member....

Looking forward to a year of great things,
Andy Kopito
Autism Society of Los Angeles

HOW to SUPPORT Autism Society of Los Angeles
Join a Campaign
If you or your organization wants to join us in our efforts, please sign up for our 
Campaign to Protect Californians with Disabilities  (details below) .   We will be developing a committee to help roll out this campaign and will keep you all posted on our activities.   JOIN the Campaign HERE

We are always in search of passionate and dedicated volunteers that can help individuals and families with developmental disabilities in Los Angeles and California. More information HERE

ASLA is mostly a volunteer-run organization that relies on donations to keep our programs and advocacy efforts continuing. Thank you for supporting our mission. All funds raised by ASLA stay in our community.  Donate HERE

Become a Member
Join our annual membership program, help support ASLA and receive benefits at Individual, Family or Business levels. More Information HERE

Sponsor a Program
Contact us at info@autismla.org for details on how to support ASLA and promote your organization.

Shopping Rewards
It's easy and NO cost to you ... 

Click  HERE  and  Amazon  donates to ASLA when you shop at AmazonSmile. Still links to Prime! 
RALPHS - Please consider selecting Autism Society of Los Angeles or 82665 as your Charity of Choice for your Ralphs card.  No cost to you, just register your card and they donate to ASLA.  Click HERE for instructions.  

ASLA Events & Initiatives

From Judy Mark, 
Government and Community Relations
Autism Society of Los Angeles

November, 2016
Dear Friends in the California Disability Community,
For many in our community, last week's presidential election brought incredible fear and anxiety.   The language and tone of the campaign, particularly as it pertained to the mocking of an individual with a disability, left many people worried about their futures.  Will their services, supports, and health care be cut?  Will they be bullied?  Will they be discriminated against?
I have received many emails, phone calls, and messages expressing these concerns.  I even received a request from a friend with autism to borrow money so that he can move to Germany where he feels he will be safe and treated with respect.  (I know, the irony of this did occur to me.)
After some thought and a week of perspective - which most definitely is not enough time, but at least it moved me from severe depression to action - I decided that I needed to put my energies into areas where I believe I can make a difference.  Thus, I am helping to focus the efforts of the Autism Society of Los Angeles in the following ways and hope that you or your organization will join us in these actions:
  1. Show individuals with disabilities and their families that we have their backs.
  • Offer special counseling, support groups, and meetings in which people can express their feelings.
  • Ensure them that we will protect them, no matter what happens. 
  • Be mindful of signs of depression, isolation, and anxiety.   
  • Pay special attention to individuals and their families who are immigrant, Latino, Muslim, African-American, gay, or other targeted groups who may face additional fears.  Focus on female consumers, who may also feel vulnerable.  
  1. Combat bullying and discrimination at the individual, local and national levels.
  • Monitor dialogue, social media, and other communications in our communities.
  • Work with other organizations, both within and outside the disability community.
  • Connect individuals facing discrimination with appropriate legal organizations.
  1. Fight any proposed cuts or policy changes by the Congress or the administration that could adversely affect individuals with disabilities or their families.
  • Focus on cuts and changes to Medicaid and Social Security, which could have dire consequences on funding for regional center services, SSI and IHSS.
  • Oppose changes that might water down the Americans with Disabilities Act or the Affordable Care Act.
  • Monitor changes to special education, affordable housing, or access to employment that might harm our community.
  1. Advocate making California a safe haven for individuals with disabilities regardless of federal actions.
  • Push for California's legislature and the Governor to pledge to protect Californians with disabilities if significant federal cuts or policy changes occur. 
  • Advocate for continued funding at current levels regardless of federal matching levels.  
  • Ensure that the entitlement provided by the Lanterman Act remains intact.
  • Accelerate efforts to implement the Self-Determination Program.
What are the next steps?  
Join the Campaign to Protect Californians with Disabilities
The Autism Society of Los Angeles plans multiple efforts over the coming months (and years) to convene groups around our common goals.  We will also empower individuals and families to advocate against any changes or cuts through trainings and publications.
If you or your organization wants to join us in our efforts, please sign up for our  Campaign to Protect Californians with Disabilities.   We will be developing a committee to help roll out this campaign and will keep you all posted on our activities.   JOIN the Campaign HERE
And please consider becoming a member of the Autism Society of Los Angeles, if you have the means.  Membership is very reasonable and we are mostly a volunteer-run organization so our funding goes to planning events, trainings, and our advocacy efforts in Los Angeles and Sacramento.    JOIN the Campaign and ASLA HERE
Please feel free to share this email and the flyers to your friends and colleagues.
More than ever before in our lifetimes, we need to come together as a community.  Please join us in our efforts.  Thanks for all you do.

Judy Mark
Government and Community Relations
Autism Society of Los Angeles

Interesting Opportunities
Autism Society of Los Angeles
Thanks their Business Members for their generosity.
Learn more HERE



Autism Society of Los Angeles | info@autismla.org | autismla.org
21250 Hawthorne Blvd Suite 500, Torrance, CA 90503