Although autism was recognized and identified in the early 1960s, education and treatment programs at that time were scarce. Nevertheless, parents were organizing and initiating programs for their children with autism. The history of autism legislation reflects the same confusion that education and health professions encountered when trying to provide services to children with autism and their families. Unarguably, the most important legislation for children and youth with disabilities was IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act). However, bowing to political demands, autism was not listed as a category under IDEA until 1990. Still, individuals with autism were eligible for some services under other disability legislation. A dramatic increase in numbers of persons identified with autism burst into the public consciousness through personal accounts from movies, books, and advocacy groups and changes in legislation, program development, and service delivery expanded at the same time. This chapter provides information on legislation that helped define the programs and service delivery systems designed to meet the growing need.