Petition by Liesa Switzer of Goderich, Ontario:
This is my daughter named Me.
Did we keep up with the latest celebrity baby name trend? Is it a family name?
No, my daughter Me, can't say her own name. At first, like many parents we laughed and giggled when we asked her name and she replied with "me". Until, we realized she can't say her own name.
You see, Me celebrates her 3rd Birthday today. Every day we try to guess what she is saying. From the time she wakes up until it is time for her to go to bed.
She has Apraxia of Speech. It's a neurological condition, she fully understands you but her brain can't send the signals to her mouth muscles to pronounce words properly. She needs to learn every single sound combination.
Children like Me need Speech Therapy. Children with apraxia of speech can learn to speak if they receive 3-5 therapy sessions a week. Without it many rely on sign language to communicate. Right now, the Ontario government provides therapy but because they are so full they can only offer one appointment every 2 weeks. She should be seen 6-10 sessions in that time. If they had the space, all of her therapy would be paid for.
Over the course of the year, she will only have 26 appointments. She should have 156-260.
This is a neurological condition and children should be given the proper medical treatment.
Private Speech Therapy costs $140 an hour. Many parents have been taking out loans and even mortgaging their homes to cover the cost.
Apraxia of speech should be treated like other neurological conditions and receive the proper treatment. Please help us tell our stories to the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Child and Youth Services.
Me and others like her need your help. She needs to be able to access the therapy she needs.
Will you help give Me a voice?