Ontario Consulting with Parents and Experts on Enhancements to Ontario Autism ProgramApril 2, 2019
NORTH BAY – Ontario’s government is putting families first by engaging with parents of children with autism in Nipissing on further enhancements to the Ontario Autism Program.
“We want to look more broadly at how we can provide support and reduce barriers for children with autism,” added Nipissing MPP Vic Fedeli.
Starting in May 2019, the government will engage in public consultations through an online survey and telephone town halls. These consultations will run for one month and help inform how our government can better support children and youth with autism who have complex needs, including through additional direct funding.
“In March, our government announced that we would make enhancements to our Autism plan by adding a needs-based component,” said Fedeli. ”I am looking forward to collecting feedback and hearing first-hand from families in Nipissing about how we can best support children with diverse needs on the autism spectrum.”
A new advisory panel will be made up of parent and autism advocates with lived experience navigating the Ontario Autism Program. It will include experts from a range of disciplines like psychology, behavioural analysis and rehabilitation services as well as education, developmental pediatrics and research.
Families will also have the opportunity to speak directly to their Member of Provincial Parliament at roundtables in their community. All members of the Ontario Legislative Assembly including the Official Opposition and independent members are encouraged to hold roundtables and engage with families.
The panel will review the results of the survey and telephone town halls. It will put forward its advice later this summer on a new needs assessment process as well as an approach to provide support through Childhood Budgets, one that is responsive to children’s abilities and needs to improve their long-term outcomes.