Councillor Leaves “Autism” Mother in Tears

A VISIBLY shaken mother slammed a Thurrock Tory councillor for “insulting her autistic child” at a council meeting last night (Thursday).

Angela Griffith attended the Children’s Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee as she was concerned regarding cuts that would effect her autistic child but she was left near to tears

Discussing the provision of Special Educational Needs (SEN) placements, Aveley Councillor John Cowell said: “Over 60% of the students at Ormiston Park Academy have an SEN. Is it going to continue to be the dumping ground for the borough?”

A tearful Ms Griffith stood up and informed the meeting that she would be making a formal complaint to the standards board.

She said: “I am outraged that that councillor could be so insensitive. My child is not someone to be dumped around the borough.”

Cllr Diana Hale said: “I hope you saw all of us in this committee recoil in horror when Cllr Cowell made that comment.”

Councillor Cowell apologised for any hurt caused. He said: “I am the local councillor for the area and have the interests of the school at heart. I want the best for Ormiston but I am sorry for any hurt caused.

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