Sunday, September 24, 2023

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.


  1. Perhaps Councillor Cowell should have gone the whole hog and followed Labour’s attempt to try and stop families with special needs kids moving into the borough completely?

    Performance and Improvement Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on 22 January 2009

    Councillor Bukky Okanade: Councillor Okunade also enquired if the number of families with children with Special Educational Needs (SEN) moving into the borough could be reduced. It was answered that the Council could not prevent people moving into the area.


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