These are my children. Joshua and Serenity.
Joshua (21) is in his final year of school. After June there is nothing. What this lack of structure and support will do is unclear. History tells us it will not be good for him.
He aged out of consideration for therapy under the McGuinty government and the therapy he received was not properly overseen by a qualified clinician. Despite our best intentions at a cost of 20k/year out of pocket for 6 years his receipt of sub-clinical therapy only did him a disservice. This is the fate of all those children being abandoned now.
Serenity waited nearly 4 years for service and we paid out of pocket for those, all we could afford, with the understanding she would eventually get the therapy she required. That day came a just under 1 year ago at the age of 7. She is still working on her toileting routine but has far fewer accidents. Across the board she has had massive gains. Too many to mention. The center cares for her needs and nourishes her mind, body and soul. No school can replace this. We have also supplemented her therapy through my insurance for SLP and OT neither of which is considered necessary in the new OAP.
There are no miracle cures for children who are born a little different. There are therapies and techniques that can be used to help them with their quality of life. They are costly, no doubt. You have heard it before. Pay now or pay later. Later is more more expensive. I heard a parent put it this way. You can save money now by neglecting to change the oil in your car but it is really going to cost you later.
This PC government and the new OAP is downloading that burden on our future generations. You are destroying decades of capacity building and advocacy.
Solutions abound to make it more equitable and sustainable. The hard-line stance you have taken is in direct opposition to your "For the People" pledge. Coming back to the table with an open mind and renewed commitment to do the right thing is a win across the board.
It is the morally correct thing to do and there is no legitimate reason to proceed with this plan.
Gervan Ross Maclean
aka (A very tired parent)