Ontario Autism Coalition to rally outside Queen’s Park as Ford is sworn in

A spokesperson for Ontario’s Autism Coalition says a rally will be held outside Queen’s Park at 10 a.m. to “remind Doug Ford and his new cabinet that our community cannot wait any longer. It’s time to get it done.”

The autism file has been one of the most contentious during Ford’s reign as Premier of Ontario.

During his election campaign, Ford promised a new focus on helping adults with autism as the province carries what many considered expired and futile services meant for children.

The coalition says the autism community cannot wait any longer.

“After four years and three ministers, Doug Ford still hasn’t gotten it done when it comes to services for children and youth with autism,” said former Ontario Autism Coalition President Bruce McIntosh.

“While this government continues to dither, 54,000 children are stuck waiting for help. Ford promised to ‘clear the waitlist’ the first time he was elected, but he has more than doubled its size.”

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On the campaign stop in May, Ford told reporters his government “wants to focus on adults with autism.”

“As their parents are taking care of them and they’re growing up, and they pass the age of 18, I’ve heard it more and more from parents as their children grow into adults,” Ford said.

“They’re concerned about who’s going to take care of them. We’re going to focus on that.”

As of Fall 2021, there were just under 24,000 Ontario adults with developmental disabilities on a wait list for supportive housing.

“Enough is enough,” Ontario’s Autism Coalition said.

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