TORONTO, March 30, 2012 /CNW/ - The parents of severely autistic children in the GTA will protest the closure of a much-loved and much-needed children's mental health centre with a "bubble party" on Sunday.
|What:||Rally and bubble party|
|When:||Sunday, April 1|
|What time:||2:30 - 3:30 p.m.|
|| Thistletown Regional Centre, front gate
51 Panorama Court (Kipling Ave. and Finch Ave.)
The McGuinty government announced on March 19 that it will close the Thistletown Regional Centre over two years. Family members learned of the closure through media reports.
The provincially-run facility helps more than 400 children and youth in Toronto, York and Peel Regions with complex mental health, behavioural and developmental disabilities, as well as children who have experienced sexual abuse. Thistletown operates day treatment programs as well as a small residential unit.
Thistletown specializes in providing therapy and community supports to high needs children and adolescents who are often considered "hard to serve" because of the chronic or severe nature of their mental health, emotional or developmental challenge. As well, the facility operates programs in several elementary and secondary schools in York Region.
Parents and family members will blow bubbles to symbolize how government promises to replace these programs are both easily made and broken.
People at the rally will wear blue to mark Autism Awareness Day, which is the next day, April 2.
A large number of the children and adolescents helped by Thistletown programs have Autism Spectrum Disorder.
The rally is organized by Families and Friends Against the Closing of Thistletown (FFACT).
For further information:
Bruce McIntosh, (416) 451-8315