Who can refer to Speech Services Niagara?

As a parent, no matter where you live in the Niagara Region, you can access services directly without a doctor referral by calling (905) 688-1890 ext. 151 or by submitting a referral online. Physicians and child care providers may also refer a child in their care with parental consent. Even junior kindergarten teachers can make a referral by following their school board's procedure for referring to us.

How much does it cost?

Nothing. We are funded by the Ministry of Child and Youth Services so there is no cost to the family.

How are appointments booked?

Initial assessment appointments will be booked over the phone when parents first contact Speech Services Niagara. If your physician or other designated professional has referred your child, our administrative assistant will call you to arrange a mutually convenient time for your screening appointment. Once your screening has been completed, should your child present with skills requiring on-going therapy, you will be placed on our wait-list. When your child is nearing the top of our waitlist, the assigned therapist will call you for the first assessment. All treatment appointments will then be booked through your assigned therapist.

Where will my appointments take place?

Speech Services Niagara has satellite sites in various cities across the Niagara Region. Please let our administrative assistant know which of these sites is most convenient for you.

Can I bring other children to the Centre while my child is attending therapy?

Brothers and sisters are welcome to attend appointments. If they want to use the play area, you may need to bring someone along who can supervise them while you take part in your child’s therapy session. Please let your Speech-Language Pathologist know if you cannot have someone come and supervise while you attend your session. Please do not bring sick siblings who you have kept home from school into the therapy sessions.

Who should I call if I need to cancel or change an appointment?

There may be times when you or your therapist will have to cancel or change an appointment time. If you need to make a change, please speak to your therapist or leave a message on your therapist's voicemail. If a therapist must change your appointment, you will be given as much notice as possible.

Why do I need to sign consent forms?

A parent or legal guardian will be asked to sign a consent form to allow information to be sent to or received from others involved in the child’s care. You decide who receives the information. Signing our consent forms also gives us permission to assess and treat your child for any speech and language concerns that we have discussed with you.

Who do I tell if I’m moving or have other changes in my personal information?

If you are moving, please call your speech-language pathologist to inform us of this change. Should you be moving out of the region, arrangements may be made to have services transferred to another preschool language program within the province.

If you have not yet been linked up with a Speech-Language Pathologist, you can call the central intake line at 905-688-1890 ext 151 to inform us of any changes in name, address, phone number, health card number (including any new version codes), school or childcare facility, or legal custody. 

My child is sick, should I keep the appointment?

Please call to cancel and reschedule your child’s appointment if your child is demonstrating the following symptoms: 

  • runny nose
  • sneezing
  • coughing
  • vomiting
  • has diarrhea
  • has a fever
  • has a contagious illness such as chicken pox, or pink eye.

Please do not bring sick siblings who you have kept home from school into the therapy sessions.

The weather is threatening. Do I still come to my appointment?

Cancellation of appointments due to severe weather conditions varies according to the location you attend. Your therapist will attempt to contact you if your appointment is cancelled. Make sure you have provided us with contact numbers. If you have not received a call and are wondering what to do you are encouraged to visit the news section of our website. Your safety is important to us, if you are concerned about driving conditions and wish to cancel your appointment, be sure to let your therapist know.

What happens if I miss a number of appointments?

It is essential that you call to let us know if you are unable to keep an appointment. Speech Services Niagara has a long list of children waiting for service and it is important for us to use our time efficiently and fairly. If it is difficult for you to keep your appointments, please discuss this with your therapist so that possible solutions can be explored.

If frequent appointments are missed, service could be discontinued.

If you miss two appointments without calling your therapist, services will be discontinued.

My child was discharged; can we come back for more therapy?

Children are discharged from therapy for a variety of reasons. If you still have concerns you can re-refer your child using the regular referral process. Click here to review how to self-refer. The wait for further services may vary depending on the reason for discharge. Please speak to your therapist if you have further questions.

When is Speech Services Niagara closed?

Speech Services Niagara operates Monday to Friday and is closed for statutory holidays. Due to scheduled closures by the lead agency, the Niagara Peninsula Children’s Centre site and some community locations may be closed. To see a list of scheduled closure dates click here.

Who do I speak to if I have a compliment, concern or complaint?

Our goal is to provide services of the highest quality. To achieve this, we welcome ongoing feedback from families. Hearing both your compliments and your concerns helps us to build on and improve our services. We will respond to any dissatisfaction you may have.

If you have a concern about the service provided, we encourage you to discuss this with your child’s therapist. The therapist will work with you to resolve the situation. Visit the staff directory. If the situation is not resolved, you and the therapist can request assistance from a supervisor.


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