letter to Prime Minister about inappropriate response from Health Department

Submitted by convenor on Tue, 5/1/2021 - 11:14

Previously, A4 wrote to the Prime Minister about an incident where police were called to a school and a young student was handcuffed. The Prime Minister did not respond.

A4 received a response (MC20-042016) from the federal Health Department to its letter to the Prime Minister.

The Health Department's response is extremely disappointing: it ignores the issues raised and shows severe misunderstanding of the needs of autistic Australians.

A4 wrote back immediately.

The Hon Scott Morrison MP
Prime Minister
Parliament House
CANBERRA ACT 2600

unanswered question about the Government's war on autistic Australians

Submitted by convenor on Mon, 7/12/2020 - 09:29

Autism Aspergers Advocacy Australia (A4) received a letter (MC20-161556, 27/11/2020 — see below) from The Hon. Ben  Morton MP, Assistant Minister to the Prime Minister and Cabinet. The letter references A4's letter to the Prime Minister on 9/10/2020 (see https://a4.org.au/node/2243).

The letter to the Prime Minister asks one simple question:

What steps will you take to cease the war these Government officials are waging on Autistic Australians?  

The letter also highlights A4's unanswered questions policy.

What's the NDIA Been Hiding?

Submitted by bobb on Tue, 17/11/2020 - 10:59

Have you ever suspected that the NDIA has a secret list of supports they consider ‘controversial’ or simply ‘no-go’ zones? Well, it turns out that up until the middle of this year, you wouldn’t have been too far off the mark. We learnt all this in the latest episode of everyone’s new favourite TV show Senate Estimates. (Just me? Oh, OK.) 

Interventions for children on the autism spectrum: A synthesis of research evidence

Submitted by bobb on Tue, 10/11/2020 - 11:15

Dear person

Based on your previous interest in our publication the National Guideline for the Assessment and Diagnosis of Autism, I am writing to let you know we have just published a new landmark report for families, clinicians, researchers and policy makers, which synthesises the best available high-quality evidence about interventions for children on the autism spectrum aged up to 12 years.

Low standards corrode quality of popular autism therapy

Submitted by bobb on Sat, 7/11/2020 - 15:58

Emily Sohn

Rapid growth and inadequate standards in the ‘applied behavior analysis’ industry may put vulnerable children in the hands of poorly prepared technicians.

When Terra Vance took a course to become a registered behavior technician (RBT) in 2015, she was trying to transition from a career as a teacher to one as a psychologist. To get the supervised hours she needed for her psychology license, she had taken a job working with mentally ill adults for a company in Lynchburg, Virginia.

Autistic Australian left out of mental health supports again

Submitted by convenor on Sun, 1/11/2020 - 11:40

Media Release

While A4 recognises the Health Minister’s “How’s your head today?” effort to support the mental health of Australians through this difficult COVID-19 period, we are concerned that autistic Australians have been left behind again.

Australian governments have a policy to recognise issues relating to the mental health of people with intellectual disability but to ignore the needs of autistic Australians. Minister Hunt and his department officially:

Girl with autism handcuffed by police

Submitted by convenor on Thu, 29/10/2020 - 07:13

The Hon Scott Morrison MP
Prime Minister
Parliament House
CANBERRA ACT 2600

Dear Prime Minister

Subject: Girl with autism handcuffed by police

The story below, from https://a4.org.au/node/2268 or 9News, describes unacceptable events. This outrageous treatment of autistic students cannot continue.

There are numerous similar reports for other autistic children.

What steps have you taken or are you taking to:

Adult autism diagnosis leaves Josh McKeiver relieved but facing work and study hurdles

Submitted by convenor on Fri, 23/10/2020 - 17:29

Melissa Martin

Being diagnosed with autism at the age of 33 was a watershed moment for Josh McKeiver.

Mr McKeiver was in his final semester of a science degree when he read an online story about a woman being diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) as an adult.

The woman's description of her condition struck a chord with Mr McKeiver, who had suffered through six years of a depressive disorder and severe anxiety.

He eventually acted on his suspicions and saw a psychiatrist, who diagnosed him with autism in 2019.

Dear Mr Hoffman - your open letter

Submitted by convenor on Wed, 14/10/2020 - 06:26

Dear Mr Hoffman

I received my copy of your open letter to all NDIS participants at 4.02pm today.

Throughout the letter, you use the term “independent assessments” despite the whole disability sector having advised you that the NDIA’s contracted assessments are not “independent”. Insisting on calling them “independent” when they are not independent at all is classic “Yes Minister” conduct. Your failure to acknowledge and refusal to respect the views of the disability community shows you are not interested in improving the NDIS for the people who depend on it.