David Cameron on Autism
Synopsis: David Cameron has responded to the UK Autism Foundation and we await the response of the Prime Minister and the Liberal Democrat leader. The debates on the Autism Bill in parliament highlighted the existing postcode lottery to public services, further cuts will devastate parents, carers,children and adults with autism and Asperger's Syndrome.
Ivan Corea, CEO of the UK Autism Foundation has been lobbying and campaigning on behalf of the poor. He expressed serious concern over the proposed cuts to public services. The UK Autism Foundation wrote to Prime Minister Gordon Brown, Opposition Leader David Cameron and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg urging them to protect parents, carers, children and adults with autism and Asperger's Syndrome from the proposed cuts to public services.
Ivan Corea said:
Mr. Cameron has responded to the UK Autism Foundation and we await the response of the Prime Minister and the Liberal Democrat leader. Families and people with autism and Asperger's Syndrome are deeply concerned about the cuts to public services. Any proposed cuts will hit the poor who are suffering already as a result of the credit crunch and the recession. UKAF has urged all three political leaders to protect the poor from the cuts to public services. The debates on the Autism Bill in parliament highlighted the existing postcode lottery to public services, further cuts will devastate parents, carers,children and adults with autism and Asperger's Syndrome. This must not be allowed to happen to the vulnerable.They desperately need help and support,' he said.
David Cameron writing to the UK Autism Foundation said:
'As you know, this country is in a very serious debt crisis and we need urgently to get our public finances under control. This does not mean that some very tough decisions are necessary and public spending will have to be cut. But at the same time, we have said very clearly as a Party that we must not pare down the debt on the backs of the most vulnerable in our society. And that is why we have committed ourselves to real increases in health spending and to deliver real changes to the way the NHS works in practice so that it can meet the health challenges of the future. I agree with you that autism represents one of the most difficult and pressing of these challenges,' he said.
The Conservative Party leader went on to state:
'I am very keen to make changes to the way the funds for these disabilities are allocated. Patients and health professionals should have more power over the way that their health priorities are decided and I want to more personal budgets and direct payments so that decisions about funding can be taken at the closest possible level to the individual concerned.'
UKAF has urged Chancellor Alistair Darling to increase the tax credits, the disability allowance and the carer's allowance for families and people with autism and Asperger's Syndrome in the 2010 Budget. UKAF has also asked the main political parties to address the serious issues surrounding autism in the run up to the 2010 General Election.
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