“More Going On Than Meets the Eye”
LTC Bus incident 2007-03- 10
Written by Ian Gillespie
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Back in the saddle after a week off (and no, I didn’t go anywhere exotic – unless you consider Grand Bend “exotic” and my mail bag is bulging (OK, maybe not bulging) with responses to a recent column.
The column (you can concerned an unpleasant incident that occurred on a downtown London Transit Commission bus). According to Lynda Robinson and several witnesses, an LTC bus driver reacted badly when Robinson’s developmentally delayed son Zane started crying and carrying-on as his mother attempted to board the bus. I received several letters from parents and teachers of mentally challenged children who said they’d experienced similar reactions from strangers. One letter to the editor was from Paula Schuck, writing on behalf of the London Coalition of Adoptive Families. Schuck wrote this:
“Sadly, Lynda Robinson’s story in the Ian Gillespie column of March 10 2007, hit all too close to home.Some of the members of our group are parents of children with special needs. As such, we have often been recipients of various forms of discrimination, the evil eye, vicious and hurtful comments. On one particular occasion my daughter, 2, was walking with me at a local Shoppers Drug Mart when a senior bent to her level, placed his face inches from hers and vocally told her what an awful child she was being. My child has sensory processing disorder, a neurological disorder she cannot control. When she is in sensory overload she also bites, hits, kicks and screams, much like Zane Hurtado.
Public meltdowns are common.Children with developmental disabilities, fetal alcohol spectrum disorders and certain types of autism do not carry visible disabilities, but nonetheless their issues can be just as challenging.Similarly, many of the members of our group are parents of children who have been physically abused, neglected and otherwise traumatized. These are little people who do not carry a visibly sign of disability but their scars are nonetheless every bit as real. It takes a huge act of courage for some children to go to school, attend playgroup or visit the local Wal-Mart. Keep an open mind next time you see a parent struggling with a difficult or spirited child. Better yet, if you are in a position to help, ask the parent if there is anything you can do.” Paula Schuck, on behalf of The London Coalition of Adoptive Families
All feed back appreciated
- LIVE Chat with Dr. Ricki Robinson Transcript (autismspeaks.org)