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The Ford government needs to stop its bully tactics

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There’s always been some art to drumming up support for a government’s policies.

That’s especially true when it comes to changes that have a direct impact on an easily identifiable group of people or produce clear winners and losers. The Ford government’s revamped autism program hits both those buttons.

According to an increasing number of accounts, though, Children’s Minister Lisa MacLeod swept aside the usual practice of artful negotiation with affected groups in favour of the sledge-hammer approach.

One group says it was threatened by MacLeod with “four long years” if it didn’t provide a supportive quote — without even knowing what the government was going to announce last week.

Another group says the government falsely claimed it supported and was involved in the controversial overhaul of autism services.

And a third group that went public with its criticism of the changes was dismissed by the government as nothing more than........

© Toronto Star