Autism parents rally in Victoria as NDP refuse to end funding clawbacks

Autism parents rally in Victoria as NDP refuse to end funding clawbacks

VICTORIA (February 9, 2022) – As frustrated parents of children with autism, who have been negatively impacted by NDP policy changes, gather on the front lawn of the B.C. Legislature today, the BC Liberals are again calling on the NDP government to reverse its decision to end direct funding for children with autism by 2025, and commit to full consultation with parents and service providers in the autism community.

“For months, we have been highlighting how NDP policies are directly harming families with children with autism. This government is forcing families to compete against one another for resources and services in a difficult system. Parents in every corner of the province are frightened about their children’s futures, and frustrated with the NDP’s plans to eliminate individualized funding for children with autism,” said MLA Karin Kirkpatrick, Opposition Critic for Children, Family Development, and Childcare. “This heartless decision by the NDP, as well as their lack of commitment to consulting with these parents and service providers across the province, is incredibly disturbing. Parents deserve to be able to decide on what’s right when it comes to the care of their children. Government taking that away is absolutely unacceptable.”

Since the NDP’s decision in 2021 to claw back funding from parents of children with autism, the BC Liberals have been standing with families and demanding the government consult with them, develop a fair and transparent plan that meets the needs of all families with neurodiverse children, and keep the existing individualized autism funding program in place.

“John Horgan and the NDP are causing incredible frustration and anxiety for parents of neurodiverse children right now and despite months of negative media coverage and pressure from parents and service providers, the NDP simply refuse to listen,” added Kirkpatrick. “It’s time for the NDP to show some respect, put a stop to these sweeping policy changes, and finally consult with these worried parents about how best to help them care for their neurodiverse children.”