Imagine you are a parent of a child with autism in Ontario. Three years ago your child was diagnosed with autism, and you immediately applied for an IBI (Intensive Behavioural Intervention) assessment. Your child was assessed by a team who agreed that IBI was the best therapy for your child and you were put on the wait list. Now your child just began, or is about to begin the therapy (the average wait list is 2 1/2-3 years in Ontario), but the Province decided a few weeks ago to change the rules and that your child is now considered too old and will no longer be receiving the therapy. You will receive a one time payment of $8,000.00 (enough to purchase about 8 weeks of IBI therapy), while the average cost for one year of therapy is approximately $50,000.00.
According to the Province, this is the only solution to the wait list problem. Not increasing funding and creating more spaces, but drastically cutting funding and arbitrarily kicking children off of the wait list based on AGE and not by whether or not the therapy IS the best option for that particular child.
Please stand with these ‘lost children’ and ask that they receive the service promised to them when they were first diagnosed with autism and the province assessed them and deemed them in need of receiving IBI therapy.
Write to your local MPP. Keep up the pressure! The Ontario Liberals have changed their mind on closing schools for the Deaf (crazy, right?) and cutting some prescription benefits for seniors. Thank you to all who showed your support on Friday, April 15th at rallies held all over Ontario.
Note: My child was diagnosed with autism at 2 and started IBI therapy at 4 years 9 months. Prior to the changes to IBI, we had agreed to discharge him from therapy at the end of June, to continue working on his social and communication needs within the framework of the school system. The majority of his IBI therapy happened during the year he was 5 and he made great strides thanks to this vital therapy. He is able to attend our local school and has a much greater chance at being a productive member of society thanks to the therapy he received. Please join me in standing up for the “lost children” of Ontario.