Spencer van Vloten: It’s time for B.C. to stop leaving kids with Down syndrome behind
There was outcry — and rightfully so — over the proposed move from individualized funding for kids and youth with autism in B.C. to a hub model that would limit the agency of parents, jeopardize years of relationship building between families and service providers, and force wildly different kids into the same inflexible box.
Credit to the government, though — and I know many will disagree with me saying that. Although they created the situation, instead of doubling down and pushing the plan through, as governments often do with unpopular legislation, they showed flexibility and were responsive to public concern, putting a hold on the hubs.
But that brings me to another unfortunate situation.
While World Down Syndrome Day, which has been celebrated on March 21 since 2012, is often recognized by policymakers across B.C., kids with Down syndrome are still being excluded from the supports other youngsters with complex needs receive.
They are not eligible for individualized funding or supportive funding on the basis of their diagnosis, despite the tremendous benefits it could bring.
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