Monique Taylor MPP, Hamilton Mountain

Government of Ontario

Internal PC autism report claims misinformation campaign used to justify cuts, NDP renews call for new program

Published on July 2, 2019

NDP calls MacLeod’s “minister of tears” comment demeaning, callous

HAMILTON (June 28, 2019) — According to an internal report authored by Conservative MPP Roman Baber and obtained and reported on by the Globe and Mail, the Doug Ford government spread misinformation about the costs and wait lists for autism services in order to justify the new program it has been plowing ahead with — changes that delivered devastating cuts to autism supports for thousands of families and children.

“Families battling back against the callous Ford cuts knew that the Conservative talking points were just made-up justifications — but it seems now that even Ford’s own MPPs knew they were lying to justify the pain they were putting children and families though,” said Official Opposition critic for Children and Youth, Monique Taylor.

“The wait list, as the Ford government describes it, is fiction. What’s real is the fact that thousands of families are not getting support and services now. It’s disturbing that Doug Ford continues to lie, and continues to stand behind the devastating cuts he and his ministers have exacted on these families.”

Minister Lisa MacLeod revealed Thursday night just how callous the Ford government is towards the thousands of families with children with autism. In a speech, MacLeod referred to the job of Minister of Children, Community and Social Services as the “minister of tears.” MacLeod was the minister that executed the cuts to the autism program.

“Because of MacLeod and Ford, families are being forced to either find tens of thousands of dollars to buy supports for their kids, or watch their children’s developmental potential slip away,” said Taylor. “MacLeod’s comment demeans and undermines families and children with autism.

“No doubt there have been tears. Ford and MacLeod caused those tears with their callous cuts.”

Taylor said families need not only apologies, but action. The NDP is calling for a fully-funded Ontario Autism Program that provides support and services based on need.