Queen’s Park, Toronto – A special committee mandated by the provincial government has submitted a report at Queen’s Park recommending both the elimination of wait times for all autism programs and overall improvement of existing services.
The development has occurred in the wake of what has been aptly referred to as an imminent “disaster” facing families wherein the current system has been found to be characterized by excessively long waiting lists, rampant inconsistency and pervasive underfunding.
In addition to addressing concerns pertaining to wait times, the 44 page document outlined the need for consistency regarding the provision of services through the continuation of program availability for young adults over the age of 18. The report also advises that going forward, only one ministry be responsible for providing programs and that funding should be aimed at assisting families pay for costs ranging from day program fees to employing respite workers.
Parents are generally satisfied with the findings. As Anne Jovanovich, the mother of a young child with autism states:
“I think it does a great job of covering concerns of parents (of children) from across the spectrum.”
Community and Social Services Minister Helena Jaczek has indicated that she has received the document and will consider the report’s recommendations.
The original article can be read on thestar.com here.