Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Message from Ottawa Rally co-organizer Sam Yassine

Sam, along with Andrew Kavchuck, have put their heart and souls into representing all Canadian families who are living with autism by organizing rallies at Parliament Hill. Please read his message following last Monday's event in Ottawa:

Dear Families

Yesterday when I saw Josh Bortolotti twelve years old, Charles
Gibbons and Mathew Gibbons under seven years and other kids too at
the rally under the rain wet and shivering from the cold, trying so
hard to represent every single one of you. I had a mixed feeling
about what is going on.

If our kids can comprehend the importance of our rallies and stand in
the rain fighting for their rights and the rights of every single kid
in the country, then we parents should understand the value of the
realty that every single one of us matters and counts.

We are at a turning point. As you know we have the attention of the
media and the notice of the government. Now is the time to encourage
the members of the government who support us to keep their fight and
to pressure the members of the government who are opposing us to give
our kids their lawful rights.

I know that all parents' hearts are in the right place when it comes
to rallies and other events. But, at this point this is not enough,
we need your presence too, we need your heart and your presence with

We are asking the government for a national autism strategy, we are
asking for Medicare for autism, we are asking for equal access to
education, we are asking for academic chair for autism in every city
and more.

All we are asking you to do is to join our rallies and events. There
will be a rally every month in a different city until the government
realizes and meets our children needs. Please join our rallies cross
Ontario, your presence means a lot, it reflect the size of the
injustice and the realty of our kids.

Forgive me for being blunt, but it's our kids we are talking about.
Thank you for your trust, support and understanding,

Sam Yassine

N.B. Yesterday at the rally there were two parents of newly-diagnosed
kids. One of them said her son was diagnosed late last year and was
just assessed by PAPEO. Well, apparently there are over 120 kids on
the waiting list in Eastern Ontario and only 5 were taken off the
waiting list and given help last year. Thus, the parent was informed
that the waiting list is about 20 years long.

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