Massachusetts Autism Services in Jeopardy!

Please take a moment to read this and HELP!  This is why so many families are in debt trying to give their children the intensive services that their MEDICAL CONDITION REQUIRES!!!

This makes me SO ANGRY!  These babies need CARE!  Just give it to them!

Dear Massachusetts Autism Advocate:

With the stamp of his veto this past week, Governor Deval Patrick has once again told low-income children with Autism Spectrum Disorders that they would not be able to receive the intensive home-based services (including ABA and Floor Time) provided under the Autism Waiver program.  Governor Patrick cut $1 million in funding from this critical program, even though our children are already underserved by this program!  During the initial eleven day enrollment period in November 2007 the families of more than 1,100 Massachusetts children with ASD applied for just 80 slots available under the Waiver.   Hundreds of low-income children continue to languish on the waiting list! 

It is time speak on behalf of low-income children with ASD living in Massachusetts!

Our state legislature recognized the critical need for funding of this program and budgeted $4 million for Fiscal Year 2009.  This would double the number of available slots in the program to 160!!  

Governor Patrick needs to be aware that this already underserved population simply cannot afford to be shortchanged againEvery child with autism deserves the opportunity to have appropriate intensive intervention.  Their future quality of life depends on it.

How Can YOU Help?

1. Immediately CALL YOUR STATE REPRESENTATIVE AND STATE SENATOR at 617-722-2000 and urge them to support an override of Governor Patrick’s veto of $1 million in funding for the Children’s Autism Medicaid Waiver (Line Item 5920-3010). If you are not sure who your representative and senator are you can find out at www.wheredoIvotema.com.

2. CALL Speaker of the House Salvatore DiMasi at 617-722-2500 and Senate President Therese Murray at 617-722- 1500 and ask them to support an override of Governor Patrick’s veto of $1 million in funding for the Children’s Autism Medicaid Waiver (Line Item 5920-3010).

3. Forward this email to everyone you know and ask them to MAKE THE CALL too!!

The override CAN BE ACCOMPLISHED, but we all have to get on the phones to our legislators immediately.  Today is the day that you can truly make a difference for a child with ASD.

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6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Cyndy
    Jul 22, 2008 @ 18:54:38

    Only when such an epidemic hits the rich and famous is when they will act. My child is one among many that have been denied services. It’s so funny that Deval Patrick wants casinos in Massachusetts and doesn’t want these children to be catered for? Who made him governor in the first place? The PEOPLE, right! Give the people what’s due! They put you in office with such great confidence and you know they can take you out!
    What kind of thinking is this? I am appalled by this! It’s time to fight for our children.

    Reply

  2. ronanjames
    Jul 22, 2008 @ 23:05:27

    You know that Deval Patrick will not sign the Child Predator law for Massachusetts either? This is insane! We were denied services for Ronan too, because we make “too much”. Hmm, we live in a 2 bedroom crowded apt., we’re bankrupt, and we have to choose between food or a supplemental hour of ABA for him, because his school only provides so much. It’s literally horrifying, and nobody gets it, except for Moms and Dads like you!
    You’re right, it’s time to fight for our kids! Let’s blog, march and never shut up! I know I won’t!
    Thanks for your comment, Cyndy. I’m with ya!

    Reply

  3. carla t
    Aug 01, 2008 @ 10:03:38

    All MA government officals should be ashamed of being associated with such ignorance. Austism is a growing epidemic that is taking over our world. This is not a problem that is affecting someone across the country, it is right here, in our backyard, in our schools, in our home. Every two minutes a child is diagnosed, a childs future, a familys hope is altered by such news that this THING that we know so little about is going to dictate the rest of our childs life… alter their living… unless we find out the cause of it,and then the solution. Please let your voice be heard, save our future.

    Reply

  4. ronanjames
    Aug 04, 2008 @ 14:26:29

    Well said sister!!!

    Reply

  5. christine in CA
    Sep 01, 2008 @ 20:03:51

    CRAP! We were just considering moving to Massachusetts for better services since it apparently ranked in the Top 5 for services for children and our current state, CA ranks below 30! NOW where do we move to? Where can we go so that our child gets appropriate services without requiring us to hire a lawyer for every meeting to protect our rights. This is rediculous!

    Reply

  6. ronanjames
    Sep 01, 2008 @ 20:53:53

    Christine, the services that are in jeopardy are for low income families that were receiving aid through the Autism Waiver program – so if you don’t qualify for it (only 80 families in the state did, with hundreds on the waiting list!), then it would not affect your family.
    There are many cities that offer good programs, without having to fight for services, although it’s getting more difficult to get everything these kids deserve everywhere.
    I have lived in both states, and I have had to fight in both for what our son needed.
    I have some friends that have had good experiences with both EI and the public school programs in certain cities.
    If you want to email me privately at BostonBroadArt@aol.com, I can provide you with some info. on a great yahoo message board group that offers excellent advice for parents navigating the system for their special needs children in Massachusetts.
    Hope that helps, and thanks for your thoughts.

    Reply

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