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Send news, announcements and comments to gbloomfi@uoguelph.ca We welcome news items, announcements of autism events, new information, discussion questions and comments, and accounts of experience.


14 April 2003




Court Stops Province From Cutting Off Publicly Funded Autism Treatment
Andrew's last hope  (Toronto Sun story). "In a stunning judgment, Ontario Superior Court Justice Arthur Gans has stopped the provincial government from cutting off the publicly funded treatment Andrew badly needs just because he has reached his sixth birthday. The injunction requires the Ministry of Community, Family and Children's Services to continue to fund the child's Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI) treatment until a decision has been made in a larger court case against the government -- and that could be a year away." 
Autism ruling sets precedent Comment by Shelley Martel, MPP of the NDP, who has actively supported parents in the campaign to extend IBI funding beyond age 6.
A shorter story in the Toronto Star.
Autistic children neglected by Eves
Letter to the Toronto Star by an Ontario physician who has "never seen our health-care system neglect a group of individuals so."

Nudging Toward Normal 
A good New York Times story about ABA, as practised by the Alpine Learning Group.

Canadian team maps chromosome linked to autism 
The map, part of Canada's main contribution to the Human Genome Project and published April 11 in the journal Science, marks a 15-year effort by Canadian scientists who collaborated with 90 researchers in 10 countries.

Shyness gene identified
Israeli scientists say they have identified a gene that appears to confer shyness in young children. Writing in the American Journal of Psychiatry, the researchers report a significant association between the long form of the serotonin transporter promoter polymorphism (5-HTTLPR) and shyness among seven- and eight-year olds.

Autism study offers hope
A human-interest story about how Duke Center for Human Genetics scientists identified a stretch of DNA that could contain important autism-related genes--after focusing research on families coping with typical autistic behaviors. It is claimed that "the research approach merges new genetic science with clinical
knowledge acquired over generations."

Autistic kids Grasp Changes in Music, Not Words
Patterns of brain activity in autistic children as they listen to sounds reveal that they indeed hear and listen to language, but fail to pay attention to the sounds the words make. In contrast, brain scans showed that children with autism appeared to both hear and pay attention to musical tones of a similar complexity to language.

A few quiet hours
A good story from the Pittsburgh area about CareBreak, in which volunteers give respite to parents of special-needs kids.

Mind the gap 
Parents of autistic children would love a little help from their friends - but the last thing they will do is ask for it. In her column in The Guardian, Charlotte Moore writes: "I have read or listened to many parents' accounts of life with an autistic child. One comment that recurs far too often is that parents have lost friends. They feel socially isolated; they hardly ever go out. They are almost imprisoned by their child's autism. This is sad and unnecessary..... What kind of help can you provide if the child of one of your friends or relations turns out to be autistic?....."


See details of more events on OAARSN Bulletin Board and Calendar
See our archive of past OAARSN news bulletins.

Please send submissions for this news bulletin or for the OAARSN Calendar and Bulletin Board in plain text format by email to ebloomfi@uoguelph.ca with "announcement" at the beginning of the subject line.
Please provide details of the following as BRIEFLY as possible: 
 Name of Event
 Main Speakers and Topics of Event 
 Date of Event 
 City and Location of Event 
 Contact information to learn more about event 
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in Guelph this week: 

Information Night for Families in Guelph-Wellington
April 16, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m. 
Hosted by Developmental Service agencies in Wellington County
At the Italian-Canadian Club in Guelph (135 Ferguson Street)  
-An update as to who is involved in the system now, and what the service "flow" looks like.  
-SEAC's importance and the need for Wellington representation. Tables will be available for agencies/groups to showcase what they have to offer. 
For more information, contact Bob Butella of Guelph-Wellington Association for Community
Living, phone (519) 824-2480. 

Jim Timmins is the new Autism Consultant for Guelph-Wellington County

Kerry’s Place Autism Services
Orchard Park Office Centre, Suite 138
5420 Hwy 6 North, RR#5
Guelph, Ontario N1H 6J2/
Phone: 519-763-5812
Cell Phone: 519-831-1737
Meeting April 17, 2003, starting 7:30 pm
at McNeil Consumer Healthcare, 
890 Woodlawn Road West, Guelph
Agenda for this meeting:
· FCSS will give an update on the Parent Support Group 
· DAN! Protocol seminar by Christine Laurent, M.A.:
DAN! For Parents: Towards a better understanding of the Defeat Autism Now protocol:
The information presented provides parents with an overview of the evaluations and treatments DAN! clinicians typically use. The goal of the seminar is to educate parents so that they can form stronger working alliances with their child's healthcare providers. Topics will include:
Heavy Metal Toxicity, Gluten & Casein Intolerance, Candida/Yeast Infections, Allergies & Food Sensitivities, Vitamin & Mineral Imbalances, Immune System Dysfunction, Secretin.

NOTE: Ms Laurent has developed this two-hour seminar about the Defeat Autism Now (DAN)! Protocol, through work with Dr. Krop of Mississauga,  attendance at the Canadian DAN! Conference, and additional study. The information provides parents with an overview of the evaluations and treatments DAN! clinicians typically use. The goal of the seminar is to educate parents so that they can form stronger working alliances with their child’s healthcare providers. She offers additional seminars and/or individual assistance forr a variety of other topics including: 

  • Implementing a Gluten-Free / Casein-Free Diet 
  • The Elimination / Rotation Diet 
  • Creating a Healing Environment for Your Family: A primer on environmental controls
Christine Laurent: CLaurent@Canada.com

Last Friday in April in Ontario is Toonie for Autism Day
A call to all schools from Autism Society Ontario:
"There is at least one child with autism in your school, your community or your family.
Your school can become a piece of the puzzle by participating in the second annual, province-wide TOONIE FOR AUTISM DAY, being held on Friday, April 25th, 2003. Your support of this campaign will heighten awareness about Autism Spectrum Disorders and raise much-needed funds for research.
"In 2001, one school wanted to help raise money for and awareness about autism. In 2002, the initial province-wide campaign reached over 300 schools, raising $90,000. With that money, Autism Society Ontario established a Studentship Award for ASD research in Canada. Our challenge for 2003 is to involve at least 1,500 schools. Just think how many people will learn about autism if we reach our goal!"

Visit  ASO website for details of several Grant and Scholarship Programs:
ASO Summer Student Scholarship Program. Deadline for applications - April 7, 2003 
ASO Stimulus Grant for Graduate Study in Autism. Deadline for applications - May 16, 2003 
ASO Post Secondary Student Scholarship for Students with ASD. Deadline for applications - April 15, 2003 
ASO Post Secondary Student Scholarship for Siblings of Individuals with ASD: Deadline for applications April 15, 2003



See also: Funding Issues--in OAARSN Discussion Boards and Topics. Press the Communications bar on OAARSN’s main page then choose Discussion Area



Accessible and Affordable Natural and Organic Foods
A Guelph family is forming a buying club linked with the Ontario Natural Food Co-op. A buying club is a group of individuals who get together to buy directly from the wholesaler, thus saving money and getting access to quality products. May be of special interest to families following special diets. 
More more information email gbloomfi@uoguelph.ca



News about adults with autism is usually negative. We receive many appeals for advice on where to turn for help--with diagnosis and assessment, advocacy, planning for the future, alternatives to approaches that are not working. There are virtually no obvious sources of help for isolated adults with autism and their caregivers.

We know that some adults and their families and caregivers are heroically using what resources they have to achieve some successes with their challenges. Some can report remarkable progress. We invite you, as an adult or caregiver living with autism, to share your problems and your success stories, if you think others might help or benefit.

Mindstorms and rainbows
"Seven years ago our son was diagnosed with a condition doctors were uncomfortable saying aloud. Today we know how much his autism has taught us." By SCOTT WARREN in the Globe and Mail, Thursday, April 10, 2003 - Page A26

If you wish, we will not publish your name or email address. You may send a message to ebloomfi@uoguelph.ca for OAARSN. Or you might use the OAARSN Discussion Board, reached by pressing the Communication bar on our main page


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