Disappointment with the Ontario Autism Program

Disappointment with the Ontario Autism Program

On December 7th, the Ontario Government announced an update to the Ontario Autism Program stating that parents now have more choice: ABA or ABA. Autistics for Autistics (A4A) responded with a Position Statement. Now, Ontario Parents of Autistics (OPA) have also responded with a Position Statement as well.

On Thursday’s Tele Town Hall meeting, it was disappointing to hear Minister Couteau emphatically state that he has been clear from the beginning that the Ontario Autism Program will only cover Applied Behavioural Analysis (ABA) services, and that the program is only for young children.
What was promising was that after many callers inquired about the restriction of choice to behavioural services, the lack of consultation with autistics themselves, and the age of those served, the Minister said that he is open to another round of talks with the public about other services that would be helpful.
This is a step forward and a CALL TO ACTION for parents, autistics, and service providers to voice your concerns and suggestions for autism supports, services, and interventions in Ontario. Please REGISTER when registration is posted for next Wednesday’s (January 17th) virtual Tele Town Hall conference call HERE and tell the Minister that the program should cover a range of well-researched and cited services and supports shown to be effective–NOT just ABA. Ontarians want real CHOICE!
Two new studies on the benefits of DIR/Floortime

Two new studies on the benefits of DIR/Floortime

A new study in Taiwan has found that a ten-week home-based DIR/Floortime program had positive effects. From the abstract: “Children made significant changes in mean scores for emotional functioning, communication, and daily living skills. Moreover, the mothers perceived positive changes in their parent-child interactions.”

Another recent study “examined the effectiveness of improvisational music therapy carried out within a DIRFloortime framework in addressing the individual social communication needs of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)”…”Results indicated improvements in areas of self-regulation, engagement, behavioral organization, and two-way purposeful communication.”

Call the Tele Town Hall to say you want Developmental Approach therapies funded!

Call the Tele Town Hall to say you want Developmental Approach therapies funded!

Registration is OPEN for the Ontario Autism Program Tele Town Hall

On December 7ththe Ontario Government announced an update to the Ontario Autism Program stating that parents now have more choice: ABA or ABA. Please call in to one of the Tele Town Halls to tell the Minister that we want choice in services for our children!

Minister Couteau’s Tele Town Halls about the Ontario Autism Program will be held at 7:00pm on Thursday, January 11th, and on Wednesday, January 17th. Here’s your chance to voice your concerns and have your voice heard! We want funding for relationship-based and developmental approach services and therapies.

PLEASE REGISTER ASAP TO CALL IN TO ADVOCATE FOR DEVELOPMENTAL APPROACH SERVICES! You can register and find the details about the phone number to call in HERE.

Hope to hear you on one of the calls!

Reduced efficiency in early sensory processing regions are precursors to autism, Canadian researchers find

Reduced efficiency in early sensory processing regions are precursors to autism, Canadian researchers find

Canadian researchers have found that inefficiencies in sensory processing of the auditory cortex appear as early as six months of age. They have mapped the emergence of network inefficiencies in infants that predict the severity of cognitive and behavioural challenges by 24 months of age.

With sensory processing playing such an influence on autism severity, the best interventions need to take individual sensory processing challenges into account in every aspect of intervention. There is one comprehensive, evidence-based, developmental approach that does just this: The Developmental, Individual differences, Relationship-based (DIR) model. Learn more at Affect Autism.

As the authors of the study discuss, social factors can impact development which is why the type of early intervention we provide is so essential. We urge the Ontario government to start looking at interventions that target development rather than behaviour. Offer parents choice in intervention. Neuroscience and developmental science support developmental approaches to autism intervention.

Spring 2017 Bulletin now available

Spring 2017 Bulletin now available

The Spring edition of the Autism D.A.T.A. bulletin is available! This issue features the Infant and Early Childhood Development graduate program at Fielding University and the research of its students. CLICK HERE to view the Spring 2017 bulletin. You can also SIGN UP to receive an email when the next Bulletin is published.