Tag Archives: autism

Call for review of Carer’s Allowance application process

The Carers’ Association has called for a complete review of the application process for the Carer’s Allowance in respect of those looking after people with learning disabilities and autism.

The association said it is encountering a worrying rise in the rejection rate following desk-top assessments at the Department of Social Protection.

The father of a 16-year-old boy with autism drives 50 miles a day to bring his son to the Stepping Stones ABA school in Kilcloon, Co Meath.

Anthony Doolan gave up his permanent, pensionable job ten years ago to care for his son Paul full-time.

He said his son cannot be left at any stage on his own and needs to be under constant supervision.

Accessibility should be part of everyday arts practice

The English National Ballet’s My First Coppélia makes use of symbol resources, which supports the inclusion of people with a communication difficulties. Photograph: ENB

For many children and young people, particularly those with learning difficulties, attending a theatre performance can be a confusing and stressful experience. Sara Ryan from the University of Warwick has described the experience of many parents taking their children into such public places as being “contingent, unsatisfactory and incomplete”.

‘If my disabled son still lived at home, I wouldn’t be here now’

In the summer of 1999, I was sitting on Whitby beach with my husband, Andrew, and our two-year-old toddler, Tom. There was a strong breeze that kept blowing sand into our ice creams, but the sky was bright blue, and the sun danced on the surface of the sea.

I didn’t know that the next day would bring a tsunami with it, one that would destroy the life I knew and leave me to rebuild a completely different one. I was only 24 weeks pregnant and my waters broke. Three days later, James was born weighing just 1lb 12oz, with extensive brain damage.