In 2010, a group of people – autistic people, carers and workers from health, social services, children’s services, provider services and education – got together to write a strategy to say how we should make things in Leeds better for people with autism.
We consulted a lot of people, signed it off (this means that important people agreed it) and then published it.
It is called Leeds Autism Strategy 2011-2014. You can read it here – Autism Strategy accessible version
The main things recommended in the strategy are:
- A partnership board to lead on the work that needs to be done
- Specialist training and awareness raising
- A diagnostic and assessment service
- Good quality assessment
- Transitions and Partnership
- Universal services such as employment, education, leisure, housing and health should be able to help people on the autistic spectrum
- Joined-up commissioning
Why did we do this work?
We wrote the Leeds Strategy because parliament had passed the Autism Act (2009) and the government wrote a national autism Strategy “Fulfilling and Rewarding lives”. There is now an update to this called “Think Autism”. These highlight many of the same needs as we see in Leeds.
What are we doing now?
We have an Autism partnership board now. It started in January 2011 and meets every three months. It is responsible for influencing and guiding partner bodies and evaluating the progress of the strategy. People who sit on the board come from all the key agencies and interest groups who will be able to help to bring about improvements in the wellbeing of people with autism.
People with autism and carers are an important part of the partnership board – we have two groups:
- The reference group for people with autism and;
- The carers’ reference group
These meet every three months too. They decide what things they want the partnership board to discuss; three members of each group go to the partnership board. We also have a group for providers ,which meet every three months.