Resources and funding

The Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services announces plan to clear Ontario Autism Program waitlists

What does that even mean? Frustrating when your regional provider doesn’t seem to understand that this new program doesn’t kick in till April 2019 which means everything remains the same as is until that day. So if you happen to be on top of the waitlist and get service you can do that for up to 3 months before the children’s budget plan kicks in. For us, we are still waiting anyways and likely not on top of anything so it is status quo. I do fully understand that finding out where we stand is not really relevant if we are not on top of the waitlist but I’ve been given this information previously so why can’t I find out today where we stand.

Surrey Place refused to provide me with the information and directed me to the 1-888-284-8340 line. That line didn’t have any information on where I stand. After I explained my situation, she gave me a direct line to Mona Haibeh. Mona mans the general inquiries from the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services and you can reach her at 416-327-6790. She was helpful and will be contacting Surrey Place regarding my waitlist confirmation. Funny how I have to jump hoops just to get information. I think I’ve learned that sometimes that’s what you have to do. If someone says no, you have to take charge and contact people above that person. You have to be strong and not take no for an answer.

Your regional/service provider should be able to tell you the following under the older 2017 program:

  • The date your child was referred to the OAP;
  • The date of referral for children and youth most recently served in the OAP;
  • Any factors local to you that could influence your child or youth’s wait time; and
  • Information about the family services and training available in your community.

Your regional provider will help you stay informed about your child or youth’s spot on the waitlist and answer any questions you may have. If they don’t then contact the number I have posted above. Disclaimer when the new program kicks in, this list may change so be aware.

We’ve been on this waitlist since November 2017 and when I called in June 2018 they were servicing children who got on the waitlist June 2017 for direct service and the direct funding option was a year behind that. At that time when I called, I contemplated on if I should move J out of the direct funding option since the direct service seems to have a closer date to date I registered. However I didn’t because that date really doesn’t tell me how many kids are in front of us. Now with the new program there will be no direct funding or direct service. There is no mention of how the new list will be from the two streams but I would assume they will just look at dates of when you registered. The numbers given by news media shows 23000 kids are on this waitlist and they plan to clear it out in 18 months. It doesn’t seem hard to populate how many kids are on this list so I can’t imagine how hard it is to find out where you stand on this list. Hopefully this time around instead of sharing who was the last child who got service they can just tell me how many kids is in front of mine.

As with anything in life, the wait is the hardest part. For now I’ll fight to see where we stand and continue to fight as needed. Don’t mess with me, I’m a mom on a mission.


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