Legislative and Community Advocacy

The Autism Society of Florida advocates for and contributes to crafting legislation to protect, empower and improve the quality of life for people with autism in all aspects of life.

We forge relationships with legislators as well as people in our communities to educate, inform and create awareness about the needs of individuals with autism in Florida. We are committed to helping people advocate for their children and teaching self advocacy skills to adults on the autism spectrum.

If you share our passion, have skills to offer and are interested in volunteering to help advocate on a more global scale, contact us and put those skills to work. Let's work together to create a better more inclusive world for everyone.



House Bill 149 is the bill against the restraint and seclusion of children with disabilities in our public schools. Currently, it allows for the use of mechanical restraint in certain situations (ie; zip ties, handcuffs, tie downs and straight jackets - specifically named in the bill). We do NOT believe that ANY child for ANY reason should be put in any of these - esp by school staff.

This bill will appear before the House Education Committee next, and your help is needed. Below is a list of committee members, their phone numbers and emails.

PLEASE contact them (phone calls are best) and ask that this bill be amended to remove any allowance for children with disabilities to be placed in these forms of mechanical restraint by school staff. Please note, this bill is not related to police officers. We're talking about "educators".

If you have a personal story, use it, but also note that more than 89,000 restraints have been reported since data collection began, and perhaps they need to be reminded of that. This isn't two or three incidents that happen to hit the news per year. It's pervasive.


Chris Latvala Pinellas (727) 724-3000 Chris.Latvala@myfloridahouse.gov

Stan McClain Marion (352) 732-1313 Stan.McClain@myfloridahouse.gov

Patricia H. Williams Broward (954) 202-3201 Pat.Williams@myfloridahouse.gov

Vance Arthur Aloupis, Jr. Miami-Dade (305) 270-6530 Vance.Aloupis@myfloridahouse.gov

Robert Alexander ''Alex'' Andrade

Escambia,Santa Rosa (850) 595-0467 alex.andrade@myfloridahouse.gov

Kristen Aston Arrington Osceola (407) 846-5016 Kristen.Arrington@myfloridahouse.gov

Melony M. Bell DeSoto,Hardee,Polk (863) 285-1101 Melony.Bell@myfloridahouse.gov

David Borrero Broward,Collier,Miami-Dade (305) 222-4116 David.Borrero@myfloridahouse.gov

James Bush III Miami-Dade (305) 953-3086 James.Bush@myfloridahouse.gov

Randy Fine Brevard (321) 409-2017 Randy.Fine@myfloridahouse.gov

Joe Harding Levy,Marion (352) 291-4436 Joe.Harding@myfloridahouse.gov

Fred Hawkins Osceola,Polk (407) 892-0409 Fred.Hawkins@myfloridahouse.gov

Christine Hunschofsky Broward (954) 956-5600 Christine.Hunschofsky@myfloridahouse.gov

Chip LaMarca Broward (954) 784-4531 Chip.LaMarca@myfloridahouse.gov

Patt Maney Okaloosa (850) 833-3713 Patt.Maney@myfloridahouse.gov

Amber Mariano Pasco (727) 861-4806 Amber.Mariano@myfloridahouse.gov

Travaris L. 'Tray' McCurdy Orange (407) 445-5254 Travaris.McCurdy@myfloridahouse.gov

Daisy Morales Orange (407) 207-3840 Daisy.Morales@myfloridahouse.gov

Dana Trabulsy St. Lucie (772) 595-1391 Dana.Trabulsy@myfloridahouse.gov

Kaylee Tuck Glades,Highlands,Okeechobee,St. Lucie (863) 386-6000 Kaylee.Tuck@myfloridahouse.gov

Susan L. Valdes Hillsborough (813) 673-4673


"One person can make

a difference and everyone should try."