End the Battle for Parents of Children with Autism

The Government promised to put an end to an unfair system where parents have to battle to get the right support for their child with autism.

They promised to create a fairer, joined up system where a child's education, health and social care needs are assessed together. Where, in the Government's own words, parents would no longer be "forced to go from pillar to post, facing agonising delays and bureaucracy to get support, therapy and equipment."

But the Government is breaking a promise. Proposals going through the House of Lords do not change the way parents have to challenge incorrect decisions. Imagine having to battle multiple government agencies just to get your child the support they need to wash, dress or go to school.

You can help to end this battle. A single point of appeal will make it easier for parents to challenge unfair decisions that prevent children with autism getting the right support.

Show your support. Sign the petition today.
Dear Secretary of State for Education,

Time is running out for the Government to fulfill its commitment to transform the special educational needs (SEN) system in England and end the battle for support faced by parents of children with autism.

The Government has a golden opportunity to improve the lives of thousands of children with autism and their families by introducing a truly joined up system for support. But replacing Statements with Education, Health and Care Plans is not enough. Parents and young people must be able to enforce their rights to Education, Health and Care services in the new plans using a single point of appeal. The Children and Families Bill as currently drafted does not provide this. Parents are being left with the status quo: navigating a bureaucratic minefield to seek redress across different services.

Without a single point of appeal across education, health and social care, the Government will not meet their own intentions for creating a genuinely joined up system, and a once in a generation chance to improve life for children with autism and their families will be missed.

I call on the Government to:

- amend the Children and Families Bill to create a right of appeal to the Special Educational Needs/Disability Tribunal in relation to all elements of the new combined Education, Health and Care Plans.

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