Ontario changes course on autism funding | Power & Politics Ontario changes course on autism funding | Power & PoliticsThe four government in Ontario is backing away from a controversial policy decision that led to months of protests. In February the province announced to change the way it’s funded autism treatment, giving families a fixed amount of money, it’s on their income and their child’s age. Parents and Advocates were outraged, and today a new minister of Social Services announced changes to the changes. The government now plans to move away from the one-size-fits-all approach to a system. Families will receive funding based on the needs of their children. Smith is the Ontario minister of children, community and social services, and he joins, is from Queens Park in Toronto. A minister you’re coming up with a new funding model. How is this going to be different or better than the funding announcement in the funding model you announced six months ago, Stan from service providers as well is that we need to move away from the childhood budgets and move into a needs-based program. That’S actually going to Target the individual needs of children with autism. It was a one-size-fits-all approach I was taking earlier. I think it’s really important that we move away from that in the Ontario autism panel, a group of volunteers who have spent much of their summer. Analyzing ideas for a new plan is tasked with the chore of a coming up with an e Space Program, with an increased funding model as well. So at this point, why should parents trust your government now meeting with parents meeting with service providers meeting with other experts in a community that we realize that we didn’t get it right? The first time the intentions were Noble. The intentions were good, however. I we realize that there has to be a different approach to this, and the needs based approach is something that we need to move forward on. I’Ve tried to build lines of communication between the community through a number of round tables and Community barbecues actually across the province, and really opened up the lines of communication with the Ontario autism panel. That’S working on building the new program: how to expand the terms of reference that they were operating within, to make it more expensive, so they could look at a truly needs-based program that fits Within six hundred million dollars. Now it also has to be Katie a program that sustainable for years to come. We don’t get back here a year or two from now coming out with a new program. Again, the families have been through this for about 12 years, and we want this to a program that ontarians can be proud of challenges trying to ensure that their children get the services that they need. On top of that, they had to take on the role of political activists when they hear you say, the intentions were good. The intentions were Noble, I think clearly, governments of all stripes or two stripes over the last number of years, particularly Ontario, but another jurisdictions as well have struggled to get this right. This is a very, very complex file. It actually takes some time, get it right, and I believe that we’re building that Goodwill with the community with service providers making sure the lines of communication are open so that we can truly for once and for all, come up with a program. That’S going to work for Ontario autism Community have been protesting and working with government since 2007, here in Ontario to try and come up with a program. That’S going to be the right fit! That’S why today I announce that we’re going to be extending the budgets for a treatments up to 6 months, at the same time bringing new families into the program and, at the same time, developing a new Ontario autism program. That’S going to be there for families! For years and years to come children from a waitlist and they’re having some questions about the numbers around this wait list from the information you have right now available to you. How many kids are actually on a waitlist receive funding waitlist. Now then, when we started and that’s because under the new program that we’re offering more services, so it was about 25,000 children that are on the waitlist. At the same time, no Katie Moore children in Ontario are in the program or are receiving service than viest. There’S about 10,500 children that are receiving service, that’s up by about 2000 2500 from when we took over the program, so there’s more services available respite services. Those were all part of the new programming and those are all issues that the Ontario autism panel will be dealing with what kind of knew program. What kind of programs will be involved in the new program? What kind of services will there be tailored Disney Huawei P reported earlier this year that your own government, one of your own and pee-pees, raised concerns with the accuracy of those claims are on the waitlist right now yeah. I do actually a lot of the kids that were previously on that waitlist or on the waitlist now have received service in the past, so it’s not as if they’ve been sitting there for years and years and years waiting for service. You know what the Mandate that I’ve, given the autism panel, used to come up with a program that’s going to fit within that 600 million dollar budget sustainable, but also helps as many kids as possible move and into a pro that’s going to help fulfill their needs. So that they can integrate into the school system and into the community system for one round of a v, a r i b, i therapy and now they’re waiting for, in some cases, a second-round. What we have to do is make sure that we’re getting the diagnosis schedule child so they can get out of the program, that’s tailored to their specific needs, and that’s what the Ontario autism panel is working on. Certainly, that’s what we’re working on and service providers as well or going to play a role in not eyes to the families who’ve experienced anxiety as a result of what happened during the failed rollout. Do you think that these families are also owed an apology from Premier Doug Ford, as well as the former Social Services minister at least McLeod? We all feel badly about the way this has gone. As I mentioned, I think we were intent it and 10th day with the intent was to do something very, very positive here and to get something for everyone, but at the end of the day, we’ve heard loud and clear that what has happened anxiety for families. I’Ve heard it firsthand I met with these parents, I met with the children. I know the type of anxiety that they’ve been experiencing and that’s why we’re so focused moving forward on ensuring that for once and for all, we get this ride. Government struggled with this program for many many years, liberal and conservative in Ontario we’re going to make sure we get it right this time so that they can all have a program that their proud of moving forward, Pieology from the premier or from Minister McLeod. To make sure that it needs the specific needs of the people of Ontario. I said earlier today that we are sorry for what this has meant for families and the upheaval and concern that it’s caused them in the uncertainty that it’s caused them, but we’re with the minister of Education, who was with me today, Steven leche and the minister of Health or Deputy Premier, Christine Elliott, children who need the services that not start the help to rebuild that relationship. That relationship that is so broken right now between these parents and the province, should the premier and should Minister McCloud, commit to making apology locate Katie the lines of communication are open right now. I think when I meet with parents, when I meet with you no service providers, when I’m meeting with everyone in the sector, they feel very, very positive about the way that we’re moving. We understand we didn’t get it right. Is government, certainly didn’t get it right either. Nobody wants to be here protesting on the front lawn at Queens Park, we’re going to take the time necessary with the development of the new oap to make sure that the program is one. That’S needs-based, that’s sustainable for years and make sure the children get the type of services that they need going forward and have the choice that they need battles here to break it down with us. Marchella Monroe is a senior strategist at ktg, public affairs and she’s in Calgary. David Ertel is a former Quebec, Liberal immigration and environment Minister. He joins it from Montreal and Rachel korine is a former director of feature Stephen Harper and is now a senior associate with Harper and Associates and she’s in studio with me. Hi everybody has policy ouch. I think mr. Smith has said all the right things today and I’m glad I guess we could stop there and say permits for making the announcement today. The problem is that they can sustain so much political damage, but they clearly felt it needed improvements. It went horribly awry to program so reversing course on their funding course entirely on their policy traction. So the question is whether this is going. What is a step toward repairing that relationship, or do you agree with Rachel Rachel? I keep thinking of one of the paint and that’s what the government today I thought mr. Smith did a great job. You sent a change of tone and I got to wonder if this has it a relationship with the federal liberals attacks government over the past few weeks. I’M wondering if that hasn’t had an effect. You seem like in last week’s some last week’s polling, a federally speaking. Liberals getting some ground, these attacks have scored some points. Terry L & like Rachel said, though this took way too much time. This was obviously a wrong choice by the government. It signals also, I think, when you listen to mr. Smith, a change of tone and that’s going to be very important to see if that tone is sustained in the fall specially until the federal election curious with Lisa MacLeod who’s, the former minister in this role, marchella. How important is bringing a new face and a NuTone to this file? Well, I think it’s extremely important. I mean I agree with with Rachel and Dave. You know, there’s not. This wasn’t a big turning point to me today and turns them on doing that damage. I saw you know quite still a bit of frustration online when this announcement came today. I think you know Timmy, Minister Smith, and his interview with you is actually better than he was at the press conference morning. He was a lot more clear, I think, can into the reason for today’s announcement, which I think I think wise to try and reframe it. But you know, I think, for the folks that have been very frustrated, there’s a couple of things that we should point out. I mean he was also very clear today, and this was, I think, something that shocked a bunch of people was at they’re not going to look to make any of these changes until April 2020, which means that the system that the Ford government has now basically admitted Isn’T working for the people that needs to work for is going to sit in place and send a fiscal, so you could there’s government reason to do that, but the political reasons aren’t really there. I also saw some commentary, which you know I think again is been a part of this frustration about the lack of transparency. People are saying we still don’t really know what the terms of reference are committee, the government’s put together to work with. So while I think Ministry Smithtown was a lot better and again, I think he was better with you than originally thought he could have worked out a bit more than I would say. I’M not sure that that it’s change the fundamental challenges the government faces, at least with this policy with the people that are in a very engaged in the issue Rachel mentioned, is that you know this was happening at a time when, when the Liberals actually rage from Parents and Advocates happens over the course of the winter and into this spring, it’s the time when the federal liberals were also in their engaged in their own completely separate problems with snc-lavalin at that time. But now that you know the Liberals have put some distance turn themselves in snc-lavalin and the liberal seemed to be at least in part recovering. Who knows where we’ll be in a few months, but at least do you think that this file has the potential to hurt the federal conservatives course? I absolutely think so. I mean points in their electoral cycles and very different points in their mandate. Taking steps to try and do that, but he’s in the first year, those first year that first year or two is going to be very difficult, is moving into an election like right now and so it was. It never made sense for them to really try and Link arms, and the other is greater popularity, because track very well. Have that same sort of idea David. It is this something that Andrew sure needs to be concerned about in terms of you know if he’s eat. If you want to recreate a lot of the success of dog for, did, have in that election a year, do files like this sort of hamper any chance. He has to recreate the the the winds he did was able to make in Ontario when Doug Ford ran he he was new. What is the flavor of the month? He had just won the leadership and was fighting against just like Rachel said 15 years of liberal government, and now Andrew Scheer has to run out only on his record as leader of the opposition. But what the Liberals are trying to do is get the Ford record. Next to share and make it about a referendum on Danforth leadership understand that this is still in its still up in the air and right now you see the concern is trying to make this about a referendum on Justin, Trudeau’s leadership capabilities and are going to make The difference one way or the other as things stand now, the Liberals are going to try everything to make sure that Andrew Scheer and up for a joint at the hip to Doug Ford and to Todd Smith. What do they need to do? What’S the number one thing they didn’t need to do true to start rebuilding a relationship on this file will, in that parallel universe, where I’m a conservative strategy price about today is that it was a bit of a nothingburger except for the change in tone, and I’m Not sure why they would engage in this issue in public, I mean to the points that Richland David eloquently made. This isn’t really great if your main concern is that federal election cycle and if your hope is that you’re going to help help out your conservative Brethren and sistren on the federal level, the more that they can avoid trying to revisit issues, especially when there was no Silver Bullet accomplishment today to stay Problem Solver going to change the policy at cetera when it was more just a shift in tone. I think it was a bit of a Communications error on their part Channel or click the link for another video thanks for watching Doug Ford’s Progressive Conservative government in Ontario is changing course on its controversial autism funding model. Minister of Social Services Todd Smith said the government will redesign the program to give support for families based on their child’s needs instead of providing a fixed amount of money based on the family’s income and their child’s age.
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