THE Liberal Nationals are announcing the beginning of a revolution for families with autism with one of the largest single investments in autism support, totalling more than $50 million over four years, should the Liberal Nationals be elected to government in November.
As part of this revolution, the Liberal Nationals will implement a seven-point plan of practical and hands-on support for children with autism and their families.
The centrepiece of this plan will be support for a 24-hour Autism Helpline, an Autism Support Group Fund to assist local community support groups to build a pool of basic programs and items families can utilise, and a review of the current eligibility criteria for Program for Students with Disabilities funding; and a commitment to push the student funding reappraisal dates back from the end of year 6 to the end of year 7. This will allow children on the spectrum to take the same level of support into their secondary school transition.
Our 7 point plan will be the start of our government’s journey to what we hope will one day be a system of carer support that is copied by other countries as the one of the best in the world.
Victoria is fortunate to have some fantastic organisations with amazing people that provide incredible support, like AMAZE, Parents Line and Carers Victoria. But there is more that can be done and must be done.
AMAZE estimates that around 55,000 Victorians are on the autism spectrum, and around 250,000 Australians have the condition – although possibly undiagnosed.
The Liberal Nationals’ 7 point plan covers both education and advocacy and support:
As part of the Liberal Nationals’ focus on autism, Matthew Guy appointed a Shadow Assistant Minister for Autism Spectrum Disorder, the first dedicated position of its kind in Australia.
Comments attributable to Leader of the Opposition, Matthew Guy:
“These practical policies are a good start, but there is much more to be done and an elected Liberal Nationals Government will keep working to do more for children and families with autism.
“Victoria must do more to help families who have a member or members that have autism. It is now time for real, practical solutions and new state investments to help these families.”
Comments attributable to Shadow Assistant Minister for Autism Spectrum Disorder, Bernie Finn:
“This policy is the beginning of a revolution for families with autism in this State. It is a recognition of the many and varied problems they face and a tangible commitment to solving those issues. Perhaps more importantly, this is the start of a process that will directly connect the autism community with the highest levels of Government.
“For the first time, under a Liberal Nationals Government there will be a real understanding of issues faced by families with autism and a genuine desire to make their lives better.”
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