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updated: 10/29/2010 6:40 AM

Candidates coming to special needs forum

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Being a father of a special needs boy, my wife and I have experienced first hand the lack of help from state agencies in Illinois. Every year I update my son's eligibility for benefits and have been told by state workers that my family would have a greater chance of winning the lottery than receiving help from the state to deal with my son's autism.

Because of programs that are overflowing with people in need and lack of funding support from the state, Illinois is near the bottom of all 50 states.

On Aug. 26, I've organized a forum for parents, educators and people who care about special needs issues to talk directly to politicians running for office, about their concerns and exchange ideas on how to improve the education and services to an exploding population of special needs children and families in this area and many others.

It's an opportunity for taxpayers who raise and care about special needs children, to talk to the people who will make the decisions in Springfield. Its an opportunity that you should not pass up to help the futures of all special needs children and their families, because this will not come around often.

The Special Needs Forum is sponsored by the NW Chapter of the Autism Society America and will be at 7:30 p.m. at Schaumburg Township headquarters in Hoffman Estates.

Politicians who have expressed interest in talking with voters are the following: 28th state Senate candidates Corrine Pierog, Democrat, and Republican John Millner; 54th state Rep. candidates Tom Morrison (Republican) and Democrat Matt Lamm; 56th state Rep. candidates Ryan Higgins, Republican and Democrat Michelle Mussman; and 44th state Rep. candidate Billie Roth, Republican. Democrat Fred Crespo was invited, but we have not received a commitment from his campaign.

If you are a person who has an interest helping special needs children, like the politicians who are attending, please email me at or give me a call at (847) 352-1174 to let me know if you can come on Aug. 26th.

Mike Baker