Autism services an unnecessary evil?

It is not surprising that autism services in South Carolina are being mentioned as the first to go in this economic crisis.

Any services for these children have been hard to come by from the beginning. Gov. Mark Sanford and his staff are discussing eliminating the expanded South Carolina program for 300 autistic children. In addition, Medicaid could also be cut.

What they don't realize is that cutting these programs that are helping so many children will only come back to slap all of us in the face later. When these tens of thousands of autistic children all over the country don't receive early intervention and they reach the age of 18, the taxpayers are going to be hit with monumental costs to help the state pay for their care. We are talking trillions of dollars.

What this all says to me is that services for autistic children are still considered an unnecessary evil in South Carolina and this country as a whole.

Maurine Meleck

North Augusta, S.C.

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