Brimming with anger and frustration, Lindsay MP Emma Husar has spoken as both a passionate politician and a loving mother demanding Senator Pauline Hanson apologise to “every single autistic child in this country” after she suggested they were holding other students back.
Ms Husar said the comments made by the One Nation Senator in the upper house were “ill-informed.”
“I’m disappointed that in 2017 we’ve got people like Senator Hanson sitting over there in the Senate making ill-informed comments about kids that are autistic, that they don’t belong in a mainstream class and calling for them to be segregated,” Ms Husar said.
“Senator Hanson’s comments yesterday are just like all the other comments that Senator Hanson makes.
“They call on people to be divided and to segregate people who are different.
“They call on people who are ill-informed to make uneducated comments like those.”
Ms Husar’s 10-year-old son Mitch was diagnosed with autism at 18 months, leading the Member for Lindsay to speak with outrage following Senator Hanson’s comments on Wednesday, June 21.
“I hear so many times from parents and teachers whose time is taken up with children in the classroom where they have a disability, or where they are autistic, that it is taking up the teacher’s time,” Senator Hanson said.
“These kids have a right to an education by all means, but if there is a number of them these children should actually go into a special classroom.”
Her comments have been slammed by politicians across Australia, who support and agree with Ms Husar that Senator Hanson’s comments were “ill-informed”.
“I’ve got one thing to say to every single child on the Autism spectrum who is going into a classroom today, whether that’s a mainstream class, whether that’s a support unit or whether that’s a school with a specific purpose,” Ms Husar said.
“You matter. You can be included and you ought to be included.
“Even on the days that are hard, and you’re frustrated and your disability makes you angry, you are still better than she is on her best day.”
Senator Hanson is yet to issue an apology, saying her comments were taken “out of context”.
Emily Newton is the Weekender’s police and political reporter. Emily is also the Weekender’s Senior Journalist.