Not having any immediate and relevant help is a horrible thing for a family waiting for services in the Ontario Autism Program (OAP). My family and many others have had to go through this. I advocated over the past few years for the government to implement an emergency response team for families waiting for core services. From my meeting with Caroline Mulroney in 2019:
– For wait listed families. I recommend the government create a Rapid Response Crisis Intervention team (RRCI) that will be able to assist with the immediate needs of the family AT HOME and current future funding and in home supports, while waiting for the provincial ABA to kick in. This team should include an outside consultant to ensure that the family is being properly supported, as required under the provinces legal responsibilities. High risk kids, such as those with self-injurious and aggressive behaviours should be receiving immediate funding for in home supports/services regardless of age, until long term ABA support is secured.
However instead of directly consulting parents, the government has insisted families going through regional providers for this survey, and once again the voices of families are being filtered by these providers. York Support Services in York Region has felt it fit to provide overworked, and overloaded families two days to respond to their survey. An email was sent out to YSSN families on August 13th, and deadline for submitting a completed survey is August 15th:
For those who are living in York Region and are families of autistic children, that survey can be found here:
Please take the time to fill out the survey. It should be families interests pushed forward towards government to make sure these supports are relevant to what’s needed on the ground, NOT the interests of non-profit agencies.