Hackney working towards becoming an autism-friendly borough

Hackney Town Hall

Making Hackney a better place for autistic* residents, is the aim of a consultation to develop the borough’s first autism plan.

Autistic residents, their families, carers and friends are being asked to share their views on how to make Hackney more autism friendly by 30 April. The consultation which is also taking place in the City of London, will be used to develop a plan of action to help the Council and its partners to work together to make services and the community friendly to autistic residents.

Autistic people can face discrimination and feel left out but local services are trying to change this through the work to develop an autism plan which includes City and Hackney’s Autism Alliance Board - made up of autistic residents, carers and organisations. The Board aims to bring autistic residents together, to help improve their quality of life and wellbeing and to get their views on making local services more autism friendly.

The Council is improving job opportunities for autistic residents through its employment service Hackney Works, which provides a supported employment service at Hoxton Opportunity Hub in Bowling Green Walk, London, N1 9AL. A person receives one-to-one support from an advisor who works closely with them to help them find the right opportunity with specific employers. They are then supported through their employment to maintain and progress in their job. The Council is also in the first year of an internship scheme at Homerton Hospital for young autistic residents aged 16-25-years-old and it will be extended to the Council from September.

For more information about Hackney Works go to: https://hackneyworks.hackney.gov.uk/support

If you are an autistic resident or a parent, friend, carer, relative of an autistic child or adult please share your views, experiences and knowledge in our consultation to help make City of London and Hackney autism friendly. The consultation closes on 30 April and the information will be used to develop the borough’s first autism strategy. Go to: https://consultation.hackney.gov.uk/adult-social-care-commissioning/making-an-autism-friendly-hackney/

* We are using the terms autistic and autism to cover various descriptions of autism, diagnosed or otherwise, including Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Asperger's Syndrome, Autistic Spectrum Condition (ASC) and neuro-divergence.

Cllr Feryal Demirci, Deputy Mayor and Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care, Transport and Parks
Creating an autism friendly Hackney is crucial to our goal to ensure Hackney is a place for everyone. We want the borough to be more supporting of autistic residents and I would encourage them to get involved, share their first-hand experiences and knowledge to help shape our autism plan.
Cllr Feryal Demirci, Deputy Mayor and Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care, Transport and Parks
Cllr Carole Williams, Cabinet Member for Employment, Skills and Human Resources
I am pleased that autistic residents can benefit from our employment service offering opportunities and tailored, personalised support for those living with neurodiverse conditions. It is leading and paving the way for the borough to become more autism friendly, ensuring there are equal opportunities for everyone at all levels.
Cllr Carole Williams, Cabinet Member for Employment, Skills and Human Resources

City and Hackney’s Autism Alliance Board are looking for new members to join. Whether you are an autistic resident, parent or carer the Board would like to hear from you. For more information contact Shabana Aslam userengagement@hackney.gov.uk / 020 8365 1493.