<![CDATA[POSITIVE ABOUT AUTISM - Autism news]]>Thu, 23 May 2024 12:43:15 +0100Weebly<![CDATA[AUTISM NEWSLETTER MAY 2024                                        COMMENT]]>Tue, 21 May 2024 10:14:20 GMThttp://positiveaboutautism.co.uk/autism-news/autism-newsletter-may-2024-commentDiscovering literacy About one-third of autistic people are minimally verbal, and most are never provided an effective alternative. However, a new study from scientists at the University of Virginia suggests that many of these individuals are literate, raising the possibility that they could learn to express themselves through writing. More

High Tech friend An AI robot has been developed in Pakistan to assist children on the autism spectrum. This AI robot is designed in such a way that it understands the needs of autistic children and provides social support to them in every possible way. The AI robot is capable of assisting autistic children in communication and enhancing cognitive abilities. More

Mechanisms of stress Autistic people may be particularly susceptible to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Recent research suggests that even mild stressors can trigger PTSD in those with autism. More

Deep dive guide "Working in education, I realised that I had the same struggles as some of my students. I became passionate about sharing my experiences and educating people about autism.” More

Fraudsters and fakes The Met Police has launched an investigation over concerns about stem-cell injections being offered to children as a cure for autism. The Royal Borough of Greenwich told BBC London it was aware of concerns surrounding "experimental procedures" on autistic children. The Met said it was investigating "a reported fraud relating to the provision of medical services”. More

Access all animals A Black Country zoo has been certified "autism friendly" by a charity for people with learning disabilities. Dudley Zoo was recognised by Dimensions for its welcoming atmosphere and work to make the site more inclusive for visitors with sensory needs. More

Support star Marie Ward, Sligo Traveller Support Group is the lead Primary Health care worker raising awareness in her community on Autism and supporting parents and families with children diagnosed with Autism. More

What, no assessments? Leeds North West MP Alex Sobel has uncovered what he calls “the startling truth” over the scandal of families struggling to get autism assessments for their children. More

Job creation The North East Autism Society (NEAS) is partnering with creative organisations in the region to launch an innovative new employability and wellbeing scheme for neurodivergent people. More

Game on Northern Ireland's first-ever gaming convention for individuals with autism returns for its second year. Fandom Con, one of Northern Ireland's first-ever gaming conventions specifically designed for and organised by individuals with autism and neurodiverse conditions, is set to return on 25th May. More

<![CDATA[AUTISM NEWSLETTER APRIL 2024]]>Mon, 15 Apr 2024 10:02:19 GMThttp://positiveaboutautism.co.uk/autism-news/autism-newsletter-april-2024Seeing me ‘They don’t see my autism; they just see Hannah’. An 18-year-old Nursing Assistant from Wythenshawe Hospital has shared how she began her dream career path, thanks to a supported internship programme. More

Skills success A programme for young adults with autism and learning disabilities is expanding amid growing demand. Autism Unlimited in Christchurch, Dorset, launched its Futures programme in 2021 for just four young people.The scheme, to help people gain confidence and improve life skills, now has 28 learners aged between 18 and 25. More

Kindness of strangers A community has rallied around an autistic 13-year-old boy who lost his much-loved model aeroplane collection. Kimmie Button said her son Lucas was devastated when he noticed the bag containing his 30 toys was missing. After a fruitless search in Doncaster earlier this month, Mrs Button took to social media to ask for help. More

Animating autism One of the most prominent and recognisable YouTube animators, Ilyssa Levy from Illymation has created and shared emotional, funny, and hard-hitting stories from her personal life that have attracted millions of viewers. More

Making sense Emily Katy was aged 13 and on a school trip when she had her first panic attack. Three years later, she was sectioned after trying to take her own life. The 22-year-old, who lives in St Albans, was diagnosed with autism aged 16 and her life suddenly started to make sense. More

Sounds amazing Autistic composer, Richard Maddock been a professional pianist/composer for 30+ years with albums being used in over 30,000 dance studios worldwide. More 

Comfort quest An 11-year-old autistic boy has said a T-shirt he designed with neurodivergent people in mind has helped others. Max, from Derbyshire, designed a T-shirt made of soft material with seams encased on the inside, no labels, and a pop-it fidget toy in the hem. More

Going underground A Nottinghamshire boy has raised more than £1,000 for an autism charity after riding on every line of the London Underground. Harry Akers, 12, embarked on the impressive challenge along with his dad on Tuesday, April 2. More

Work overload “There’s so much just going on that is so exhausting, so overstimulating" What is the workplace like for neuro-divergent employees? More

<![CDATA[AUTISM NEWSLETTER MARCH 2024                                     COMMENT]]>Mon, 18 Mar 2024 13:40:31 GMThttp://positiveaboutautism.co.uk/autism-news/autism-newsletter-march-2024-commentAttendance and autism Children who are persistently absent from school are often autistic, a survey by a Hackney parents' group suggests. A report by Hackney Independent Parents (Hip) has been investigating the growing problem of "emotionally based school avoidance (ESBA)", a local authority meeting heard. More

Big challenge  Celebrity Big Brother’s Bradley Riches reflects on challenges of autism. While discussing his 2023 children’s book, “A” Different Kind Of Superpower, with fellow housemate and West End star Marisha Wallace, Riches explained that some aspects of being in the Celebrity Big Brother house can be challenging. More

Autism assessments A quarter of families wait at least four years for an assessment, a Channel4 survey shows. More

Reasonable adjustments The recently published Buckland report recommended a range of ways in which employers can better support autistic employees. This starts with the recruitment process, argues Euan Cameron. More

Press praise A journalist has thanked colleagues for their support after recently being diagnosed with autism. Aaron Greenaway has praised fellow staff at Tindle Newspapers in Cornwall after his diagnosis. More

Silence and stigma Having autistic kids can leave South Asian mums isolated. Habiba says women like her feel isolated and alone because autism is not discussed in the south Asian community. More

Autistic Joy Angela Lauria is the creator of The Autistic Culture Podcast which advocates for viewing autism as a cultural difference to be embraced and not a disorder to be fixed. More

Sounds sensitive The Auerbach Lab at the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology is soon to examine how different genes associated with autism may impact the brain’s neurons, resulting in heightened sensitivity to sounds. More

Forced to fail Some pupils with autism in Scotland are forced to “fail” in mainstream education before receiving the necessary support, MSPs have heard. Suzi Martin, the external affairs manager for the National Autistic Society Scotland said the pace of progress on support for children needing more support has been too slow. More

Eating disorder support A service supporting young individuals with autism who suffer from eating disorders suggests identifying early signs of autism could help understand eating habits which could lead to a disorder. The Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire Pathway for Eating disorders and Autism developed from Clinical Experience (BOB PEACE), has been treating adolescents and young people for years, providing targeted mental health support. More

Rock on
The music industry has rallied around a rock band predominately made up of musicians with a learning disability after the group were stripped of vital charity funding. The six members of Ultimate Thunder from Leeds have been playing together for over a decade and relied on financial support to pay for equipment and support staff. More

<![CDATA[AUTISM NEWSLETTER FEBRUARY 2024                                  COMMENT]]>Thu, 15 Feb 2024 12:11:26 GMThttp://positiveaboutautism.co.uk/autism-news/autism-newsletter-february-2024-commentRepeated failings The crisis in mental health services for autistic young people is costing lives. This BBC film investigates. More

Speaking for autism Oracy is a hot topic but what does it mean for learners with complex additional needs who may have idiosyncratic ‘speech’, are reluctant to utter sounds, or rely on technology to do so? This article examines the current drive towards teaching ‘fluent’ speech as a means of enabling equality and opportunity. More

Safe date For 24-year-old Sira Rehn, a dating app for people with mild intellectual disabilities and autism has opened up the world of online dating and a chance to find love in a safe space. More

Research right Studies investigating autistic community research priorities indicate a mismatch between what autism research focuses on and what autistic people want to see researched. Time to listen. More

Great trains GWR has been recognised by The National Autistic Society for making train travel more accessible for people with autism.The society applauded the train operator for introducing several autism-friendly changes, particularly at stations in the western region of its network. More

Escaping the wait A mother who fled to the UK from Ukraine with her seven-year-old son said she had no choice but to return to the war-torn country to avoid a three-year NHS wait for an autism assessment. More

Anxiety advice Over the past 10-15 years, research has confirmed what many parents and teachers have long suspected – that many autistic children often experience very significant levels of anxiety. Download this guide from City University, London. More

Stim supply When an individual experiences too much distressing sensory input (becoming overstimulated) or not enough positive sensory input (becoming understimulated), it can trigger sensory meltdowns or shutdowns. Fortunately, sensory items and stim toys have become more mainstream in recent years. Many autistic people use these items to self-regulate, cope with sensory issues, and attend to their sensory needs. More

Financial needs The first study into raising an autistic child using the Minimum Income Standard (MIS) approach, has found that families and carers face costs of more than £2,650 each year – to cover everyday essentials that meet their children’s needs. More

Time to learn Mandatory autism training should be introduced for teachers, the House Commons has heard today. Duncan Baker, Conservative MP for North Norfolk, has introduced a bill to Parliament in the hope of bringing in the change. The backbench MP said mandatory training would be aimed at identifying signs of autism and helping autistic children to achieve positive outcomes in school. More

<![CDATA[AUTISM NEWSLETTER JANUARY 2024                                  COMMENT]]>Wed, 17 Jan 2024 13:06:22 GMThttp://positiveaboutautism.co.uk/autism-news/autism-newsletter-january-2024-commentImmersed in the task Going with the flow Is there overlap between Autistic hyperfocus and flow? Take a look at this investigation of autistic people's flow-like or hyperfocus experiences. More

Dog decision Mike and Erin Doan wanted to adopt a dog from Kismutt Small Dog Rescue but were told by the owner that they would not adopt out a dog to a family with an autistic child. More

Accessible worship Parents sometimes find it difficult to attend the mosque themselves at prayer times, due to the fear that their child might not cope well in the mosque environment and disturb the prayers. Here are 7 simple, cost-effective ways that mosques can cater to the needs of the autistic community.  More

Mothers speak out Children out of education, careers cut short and crumbling mental health. These are some of the ways parents of children with special educational needs (SEND) say they are being impacted by a system struggling with demand. More

On pitch empathy A football player wore ear defenders to show support for a team mascot with autism. Slough Town FC's Josh Jackman, wore the ear guards while walking out for a match against Farnborough. Roseanne is a young fan with autism, who wears ear defenders during games to limit noise and help to keep her calm. More

Advocating for advocacy Gail Petty writes about the findings from a major new research report which reviews advocacy for people with learning disabilities and autistic people who are inpatients in mental health settings. More

In control Animation on how to improve quality of life at home by finding ways to enable your child to make free, healthy autonomous choices. This can also help ease some parenting stress levels. More

STOMP it out Medics need to “fully engage” with NHS England’s campaign to stop the overmedication of people with a learning disability, autism or both. That’s the view of campaigner Paula McGowan. She says medics should always seek a “non-pharmaceutical approach and work closely with their neurodivergent patients”. More

<![CDATA[AUTISM NEWSLETTER DECEMBER 2023                                 COMMENT]]>Wed, 13 Dec 2023 09:50:49 GMThttp://positiveaboutautism.co.uk/autism-news/autism-newsletter-december-2023-comment
Home learning A new complex in Hungary will be a home for learning, diagnosis, counselling and education for families with an autistic member. More

Autistic culture "The whole purpose of the show is to defy stereotypes". How to Dance in Ohio is a Broadway musical starring 7 autistic actors. More

Unsupported An autistic woman has been left without the workplace support she needs for more than 15 months because of repeated delays and incompetence by the government’s Access to Work scheme. More

Sharing progress "I accepted the challenge that my son took on fifteen years ago. I have therefore committed to speaking positively about my son” More

Not the stereotype Ife Thomas was  told she was 'too confident' to be autistic. Now she is is raising awareness about autistic black women through social media and public speaking. More

Isolation Autistic people are four times more likely to be lonely than those who are neurotypical, according to a new study. More 

Deeper understanding Jacky Stabler is the owner behind the hugely successful Full Circle Bakes business. She spoke to Glasgow Live this Disability Visibility Day about her experiences living with autism and ADHD and why her diagnoses changed her life for the better. More

Grief Simeon Jackman-Smith tells us how his autism affected his grief when his dad, David, died in April 2022. "First I was shocked, then it was sadness," says Simeon. "Then I was just angry”. More 

Discrimination A police officer was treated unfavourably and discriminated against when she was rejected from firearms training because she is autistic. More

<![CDATA[AUTISM NEWSLETTER NOVEMBER 2023                           COMMENT]]>Tue, 21 Nov 2023 10:26:22 GMThttp://positiveaboutautism.co.uk/autism-news/autism-newsletter-november-2023-comment9911404Animating autism PBS Kids is developing its first-ever series featuring a lead character on the autism spectrum and his neurodiverse friends. The animated show called “Carl the Collector” follows Carl, a raccoon with autism who loves to collect things, and his friends in Fuzzytown, a place where everyone is learning about themselves and those around them. More

Safe community "Being non-binary, queer, autistic, ADHD, I grew up really isolated, and didn't have a lot of community, didn't really have any tools or skills, or any good things going on in my life". Finding a safe community was a difficult task for Sonny Jane Wise, until they created one for others with a similar experience. More

No Bill Charities have accused the government of a "major breach of trust" after key reforms did not appear in the King's Speech. The Mental Health Bill, now seemingly dropped, contained provisions to reform the Mental Health Act 1983, which currently allows people with autism and other learning difficulties to be detained and placed in mental health hospitals. More
Hate crime A report finds that people with autism and learning disabilities are still facing hate crimes. Hate crimes against people living with disabilities between 2021 and 2022 increased by 25%. More

Turned away A new screening system for adults wanting an autism or ADHD diagnosis has rejected up to 85% of requests for a referral since it was launched, adding to concerns from campaigners who warn it could become a blueprint across the NHS. More

Hearing in colour A new analysis of thousands of sets of twins suggests that synaesthesia shares genetic roots with autism. Synaesthesia seems to be linked to what are known as non-social autism traits. More

No access An autistic man will receive £20,000 compensation after a “discriminatory” refusal to make the reasonable adjustments he requested for a job interview with the government agency responsible for NHS digital technology. More
Nicholas’s story ‘I’ve been locked up for 10 years because I’m autistic. Is a chance at life too much to ask?’ More

Job open (or wrapped) Gillian Jervis set up her and her husband's fish and chip shop to secure their autistic child's future after one horrible comment changed everything. More

<![CDATA[AUTISM NEWSLETTER OCTOBER 2023                                 COMMENT]]>Mon, 16 Oct 2023 10:23:55 GMThttp://positiveaboutautism.co.uk/autism-news/autism-newsletter-october-2023-commentHow do autistic people experience maternity care? Dr Aimee Grant, Senior Lecturer in Public Health at Swansea University, tells us how her experience of autism and maternity care inspired her to research the topic. More

Social isolation Michelle Myers was diagnosed with autism at 41 and has spent her whole life masking who she really is. She has experienced first-hand the effects of stigmatisation, social isolation, and limited opportunities due to a lack of understanding surrounding autism. More

National crisis The National Autistic Society was formed in 1962 and opened the World’s first specialist school for autistic children in 1964. Recently, though the charity has felt the brunt of Government cuts in funding for care, with several services forced to close. More 

Hubs help The NHS has invested £200,000 for autism hubs to run in Derbyshire. In the hubs, charities and voluntary organisations will support children and young people - and their families and carers - with topics such as benefits, housing, employment, and clinical services. More

Teaching skills Breaking tasks down into their component parts and simplifying instructions will go a long way to helping autistic children master new skills. More

Augmenting lives Communication is key and Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) can really help. AAC covers a range of strategies and tools which help children and adults communicate. These may be simple letter or picture boards, or very sophisticated computer-based systems. More 

Thinking differently Autism self-advocate Travis Misurell shares how the Future Is Now Coalition is working to make the US democratic process more accessible. More

‘Running is the ultimate stim' Insights from autistic ultra-runner, Ishmael Burdeau, into how the sport of ultra-running can be a place for autistic athletes to grow and prosper. More

Missing school A teenager with autism says going to school can feel "like hell" due to lack of help for additional learning needs. Leonie, 15, from Merthyr Tydfil, would beg not to attend school before she got tailored support. More

<![CDATA[AUTISM NEWSLETTER SEPTEMBER 2023                         COMMENT]]>Tue, 19 Sep 2023 08:31:31 GMThttp://positiveaboutautism.co.uk/autism-news/autism-newsletter-september-2023-commentInside autism Science journalist Sue Nelson shares her personal journey to better understand autism. Inside her autistic inner world is a cacophony of brain chatter, anxiety and sensory issues - recreated within a 360 degree soundscape - that impact her life and interactions with others. More

Autism understood
“We have made this website so that everyone can gain a better understanding of what autism is, since most people we meet seem a little confused about what autism actually is”.  More

Failing children The ICARS Report (England) documents the experiences of 560 English children. It exposes an educational system which has failed children, especially those receiving SEND services, and their families with devastating consequences. More

Together as partners Telford and Wrekin are launching a borough-wide autism strategy to support all autistic adults in the borough to lead healthy and fulfilling lives, where they feel valued and supported. More

School avoidance Why are why are so many neuro-diverse kids refusing to go to school? More

Assessment explained If you think you or your child need support at school, home or at work, you can start getting help before having an assessment. What happens during an autism assessment? More

Bad practice What is being done to reduce the use of restrictive practices, including restraint, seclusion and segregation? More

Onside with autism The Wrexham and Ireland midfielder, James McClean has spoken of his pride at his autism diagnosis during a frank interview with Patrick Kielty on The Late Late Show. He said he was initially hesitant about getting tested as a diagnosis could further make him a target for rival fans. More

Tablet tool An electronic tool could help clinicians diagnose autism in children younger than age 3, according to two new studies conducted across six major autism centres in the United States. More

Waiting times More than 143,000 people are currently waiting for an autism assessment in England, according to the latest NHS figures. More

<![CDATA[AUTISM NEWSLETTER AUGUST 2023]]>Tue, 29 Aug 2023 08:43:54 GMThttp://positiveaboutautism.co.uk/autism-news/autism-newsletter-august-2023Ageing with autism Scottish Autism has partnered with the Heriot-Watt University to use filmmaking and art to explore the hopes, concerns and needs of older autistic adults. More

Exam worry A teenager with autism may have to abandon their GCSEs if a classroom assistant is not made available for the start of the school term. Toni Humphreys' family asked for help in March but the Education Authority (EA) still has not finalised support. More

Accommodation please
Finding a home for adults with complex care needs can be a challenge many families face. But one couple decided to try something new and developed a care home for their son which has gained international interest. More

Autism and employment
Workplaces can be mood-draining places at the best of times, but for neurodivergent people they can be a minefield of overstimulation, frustration and fatigue. More

Guiding good practice
Health professionals have responsibilities to ensure that people with a learning disability and autistic people receive good care. NHS England has updated it’s clinical guidance. More

Leading with care
Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, explains the difference between leadership and management and highlights why it’s essential that every member of the workforce has a clear vision to work to. More

Autism and health
The health conditions that tend to accompany autism in adolescence grow even more prevalent by early adulthood, according to a new longitudinal study. The findings underscore the importance of continually screening for these conditions in autistic children as they age, especially as they transition from paediatric to adult care. More

​Diagnostic delay
Some children in Kent are having to wait up to four years for an autism or ADHD diagnosis. More