Autism Reality

Layton, Stoffer Slam Zero Conservative Support for Autism

NDP leader Jack Layton and NDP MP Peter Stoffer have slammed the Harper Conservatives for failing to provide any funding whatsosever for autism in its recent federal budget. The Conservatives did not ante up a single penny for autism.

Meanwhile Mike Lake, the Conservative MP and father of an autistic child, who opposed the Shawn Murphy attempt to ensure autism coverage in the Canada Health Act, has not offered any public comment on the failure to provide a single penny for autism in his party’s budget. Emails sent to his office are responded to by a staffer who informs that Mr. Lake has received too many emails on the subject of autism to respond personally.

Stoffer slams federal government for not providing autism funding in budget

Fri 23 Mar 2007

OTTAWA – NDP Leader Jack Layton and Peter Stoffer (Sackville-Eastern Shore) slammed the federal government today for not providing funding in the federal budget to help families with autistic children.

“Families with autistic children are in crying need of support,” said Layton. “They are very disappointed that the Conservative government has ignored their needs in the budget. Providing support for these families should be a bigger priority for the federal government than corporate tax cuts.”

“It is also hypocritical that the Harper government is ignoring the autism motion M-172 passed by the House of Commons last December,” said Stoffer. “When Harper was in Opposition, he constantly criticized the Liberal government because it did not respect the votes of the House of Commons. It is surprising how quickly the Conservatives have become just like the Liberals.”

M-172 requires the federal government to work in cooperation with the provinces and territories to establish national standards for treatment and delivery of services, study funding arrangements, create a national surveillance program, and provide more funding for health research on autism.

“The federal government must work with the provinces and territories to find a way to include autism therapy in the health care insurance plan of every region across this country,” said Stoffer. Stoffer introduced a private members bill (C-211) to this effect last fall.

Stoffer also expressed his profound disappointment with the federal government in failing to recognize the Veterans First Motion and ignoring the issue of Agent Orange and Agent Purple in the budget. The Veterans First motion was passed in November 2006 and suggested five key reforms that would deliver long overdue fairness and security for Canadian Forces veterans and their families.

“With a $14.2 billion dollar surplus, how can the federal government not provide more funding and services for families with autistic children and for veterans and their families? It is absolutely shameful. It is time for the federal government to be proactive in the lives of Canadian families living with autism.”

March 24, 2007 Posted by | autism, budget, Canada Health Act, Jack Layton, Mike Lake, NDP, Peter Stoffer, Stephen Harper | 2 Comments

New Brunswick Budget Supports Students with Autism

Students with autism in New Brunswick are being backed by the Shawn Graham Liberal government which has put money in the budget to provide autism specific training to teacher assistants and resource teachers. There was some confusion generated by an earlier newspaper story on the subject but Education Minister Lamrock subsequently confirmed the Graham government’s election campaign promise to provide autism specific training to 100 teacher assistants and resource teachers each year for the next 4 years at the UNB-CEL Autism Intervention Training program. And now the money to start that process has been set aside in Premier Graham’s first budget as announced by Finance Minister Boudreau.

A total of $1.2 million will go to provide training to teaching assistants and methods-and-resource teachers in applied behavioural analysis in support of students with autism, said Boudreau.

New Brunswick is a small province and not the richest in Canada. Today though, Premier Shawn Graham and his government have put New Brunswick in the forefront in Canada as a leader in educating autistic students; they have shown they are serious about providing New Brunswick’s students with autism with a real education.

Now THAT is inclusion.

March 15, 2007 Posted by | aba, autism, autism education, budget, resource teachers, teacher assistants, UNB-CEL | Leave a comment