Autism Action NOW! Contact Your MP to Support Bill C-360 An Act to amend the Canada Health Act (Autism Spectrum Disorder)
Posted Apr 07 2009 11:11pm
Contact your MP - TODAY - and urge him or her to support Bill c-360
An Act to amend the Canada Health Act (Autism Spectrum Disorder)
Canada, like the US and the UK, is experiencing a national autism crisis. In the UK the latest figures report that 1 in 60 children have, or will have, an autism spectrum diagnosis. In the US the figure is reported at 1 in 150. Both of these figures are shockingly higher than the 1 in 1000 figure that existed prior to the change in diagnostic criteria in the 1993-4 DSM revision period. Even since those revisions which do account for a significant increase the numbers have risen dramatically. It is long past time to stop pretending that we are not experiencing an autism epidemic.
Here in Canada it is long past time that we stopped pretending that we are not experiencing a national autism crisis with families relocating from province to province in search of funded effective ABA treatment for their children and ABA based education when they reach school age. This is not a partisan political issue. Both Liberal and Conservative governments have ignored the autism crisis in Canada. NOW is the time to do something about it. Andy Scott, Peter Stoffer, Shawn Murphy and Senator Jim Munson have been valiant advocates begging their political colleagues to take autism action. Now Glenn Thibeault, SudburyNDP MP, has moved to introduce Bill C-360, an Act to amend the Canad Health Act (Autism Spectrum Disorder).
Canada's National Autism Crisis is a matter which ""goes beyond local or provincial concern or interests and must from its inherent nature be the concern of the Dominion as a whole" as the Privy Council said in upholding the POGG, Peace Order and Good Government, constitutional authority of the federal government to act to address national issues beyond the scope of the province's ability to address. The National Autism Crisis begs for a national solution. The Government of Canada has to stop ignoring this crisis.
Ask your MP to deal with Canada's National Autism Crisis and support Bill C-360. Your MP can be contacted via the link provided at this site:
He said: Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the seconder of this bill, the hon. member for Nickel Belt.
I am pleased today to introduce this private member's bill, an act to amend the Canada Health Act, and to look at how we can include autism spectrum disorder in it.
Yesterday was World Autism Awareness Day. I still wear my awareness pin proudly. We as parliamentarians need to work together to provide individuals with ASD and their families with the right supports. IBI training is a step in the right direction, but we need a national strategy. I look forward to the day when all parties can stand together and show our support for individuals and families dealing with autism.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)
The purpose of this enactment is to ensure that the cost of Applied Behavioural Analysis (ABA) and Intensive Behavioural Intervention ( IBI ) for autistic persons is covered by the health care insurance plan of every province.
BILL C-360 An Act to amend the Canada Health Act (Autism Spectrum Disorder)
Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:
1. Section 2 of the Canada Health Act is renumbered as subsection 2(1) and is amended by adding the following:
(2) For the purposes of this Act, services that are medically necessary or required under this Act include Applied Behavioural Analysis (ABA) and Intensive Behavioural Intervention ( IBI ) for persons suffering from Autism Spectrum Disorder.
In particular, the "national dimensions" (originally called "national concerns") doctrine was an alternate means of applying the POGG powers that found use in the mid 20 th century. It allowed Parliament to legislate on matters that would normally fall to the provincial government when the issue became of such importance that it concerned the entire country.
The doctrine originated from a statement by Lord Watson in the Local Prohibition case, wherein he stated:
"Their Lordships do not doubt that some matters, in their origin local and provincial, might attain such dimensions as to affect the body politic of the Dominion, and to justify the Canadian Parliament in passing laws for their regulation or abolition in the interest of the Dominion".
After this case the doctrine was completely ignored until 1946 when Viscount Simons brought it back in the case of Ontario v. Canada Temperance Foundation,  A.C. 193 (P.C.). The test as stated in Temperance Foundation was whether the matter " goes beyond local or provincial concern or interests and must from its inherent nature be the concern of the Dominion as a whole".