Ted Arnott, MPP
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 17, 2016
All children with autism need our support
(Queen’s Park) – The Government has a responsibility to support all children with autism and
provide them with the therapy they need to succeed, says Wellington-Halton Hills MPP Ted
On May 13, Mr. Arnott and Wellington-Halton Hills MP Michael Chong met in Georgetown with a
number of local families who have children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), who
expressed their concerns over the Ontario Government’s decision to limit funding for Intensive
Behavioural Intervention (IBI) therapy.
Mr. Arnott took their concerns directly to the floor of the Ontario Legislature, raising their
concerns directly with the Government in Question Period on May 17. He shared the story of
David and Linda Galvao of Georgetown, and their sons Toby and Luke.
“David and Linda Galvao’s sons Toby and Luke both have ASD,” Mr. Arnott told the Deputy
Premier. “Their older son Toby began IBI therapy at age 6, and within 30 days he went from
being non-verbal, to speaking and even reciting the alphabet. Their younger son Luke has been
on the IBI waitlist for 3 years, and is now 6.”
“Under the Government’s plan to ration IBI therapy, Luke would be denied the chance to reach
his full potential, the same chance that IBI therapy, at age 6, gave to his brother Toby,” Mr.
Arnott informed the Deputy Premier.
Under the Liberals’ plan, the Government will limit funding for IBI therapy to children between
the ages of two and four. Families with children five years of age or older who are currently on
the wait list for IBI therapy will have their names removed from the list and receive a one-time
payment of $8,000.
“How can this Government be so heartless as to say to the Galvao family that their older son
has a future, but their younger son is on his own?” Mr. Arnott asked the Deputy Premier.
Mr. Arnott’s question came on the same day Ontario PC Leader Patrick Brown brought forward
an opposition day motion in the Legislature calling on the Government to restore funding for IBI
therapy for children over the age of five.
“Our Ontario PC Caucus has been very vocal about our opposition to the Government’s
decision to limit autism funding,” Mr. Arnott said. “After all the billions of dollars they’ve wasted,
how can they turn their backs on these children?” Mr. Arnott asked afterwards.
After Question Period, Mr. Arnott thanked those who attended the May 13 meeting for stepping
up and making their voices heard.
“I want to thank Jennifer Hicks for initiating the meeting and helping to bring all the parents
together last week,” Mr. Arnott said after Question Period. “I also want to thank everyone for
coming to meet with us and sharing their stories.”
One of the attendees at the meeting was Freya Hunter, a therapist in Fergus who treats autistic
“Ms. Hunter raised a number of great points in our discussion,” Mr. Arnott said. “She questioned
whether there were other alternatives the Government could have considered, such as requiring
insurance companies to provide coverage for autism as part of their benefit plans.”
Mr. Arnott also thanked Wellington-Halton Hills MP Michael Chong for taking part in the meeting
“Even though he’s extremely busy these days, I was glad that Mike took the time to join us and
show his interest and concern in this important issue,” Mr. Arnott said.
– 30 –
Ted Arnott, MPP
Text of Mr. Arnott’s question to the Minister of Children and
Youth Services, May 17, 2016
Mr. Speaker, my question is also for the Minister of Children and Youth Services.
Last Friday, I met in Georgetown with families from our Riding who have children with Autism
Spectrum Disorder. David and Linda Galvao’s sons Toby and Luke both have ASD. David and
Linda are planning to be here later today.
Their older son Toby began IBI therapy at age 6, and within 30 days he went from being non-
verbal, to speaking and even reciting the alphabet.
Their younger son Luke has been on the IBI waitlist for 3 years, and is now 6.
Under the Government’s plan to ration IBI therapy Luke would be denied the chance to reach
his full potential, the same chance that IBI therapy, at age 6, gave to his older brother Toby.
How can this Government be so heartless as to say to the Galvao family that their older son has
a future, but their younger son is on his own?