Mother behind autism advert meets Brown - London Evening Standard
A mother who wrote a message to Gordon Brown on billboards across the capital to highlight the plight of autism sufferers is to meet the Prime Minister today.
Polly Tommey, from Hampton, whose 13-year-old son Billy has the condition, said she would use their meeting to call for more support for thousands of people in Britain. Her autism charity estimates the Government could save £508million a year by giving jobs to people with the disorder.
She said: "I'm delighted and even thinking of voting Labour for the first time in my life after this. But what we now need are results."
Mrs Tommey, 42, had made repeated attempts to reach Mr Brown and other ministers over the past few months but failed to get any response until now. The mother-of-three had accused the Government of ignoring the "overwhelming stress and demands faced by families of those with autism".
More than 500,000 people in Britain have the condition. She said: "Billy has a bleak future in our blinkered world. It is not fair that his potential is dismissed.
"Unless the problems of autism are understood and support is more widespread, we will see an underclass of desperate autism households."
Mrs Tommey, a former actress who has worked as a body double for Charlotte Rampling, said she also asked to meet Tory leader David Cameron and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg, but both said they did not have time. Her charity, the Autism Trust, was founded by Mrs Tommey after Billy was diagnosed aged two. Her £500,000 "Dear Gordon" campaign, at 76 sites across London in April, was funded by sponsors and advertising outlets.
She is also an experienced broadcast and print journalist & author. Tania also runs a PR, web & social media consultancy, SocialOro Media. She is a Rare Disease & chronic pain patient advocate with Ehlers Danlos syndrome.
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