TUC Guide to Autism
The TUC has now launched its first Guide to Autism. The TUC reported that "Autism is a term covering a wide range of conditions that reflect neurological differences among people. It can cause social barriers which may affect the lives of people with autism at work. There are about 332,600 people of working age in the UK with autism. However, only 15 per cent of adults with autism are in full-time employment and only 9 per cent are in part-time work.
The guide aims to "inform union reps and workers of the facts around the condition, and advice on how to support autistic staff to ensure they get the adjustments they may need – and are legally entitled to. The guide explains the difficulties autistic people can face at work, and suggests a number of changes that an employer can implement to make the workplace more autism-friendly, including:
- a relaxation space in the workplace, like a quiet room
- reduction in an overload of distractions in the workplace, like maximising natural light, and enabling easy control of light and temperature
- information about autism and support services available so that all workers can access it
- providing paid time off for union reps to attend training and events about autism
- all instructions and policies to be written and communicated clearly and accurately
- training for managers about autism, including recognising autistic positives and skills
- all changes to working practices to be negotiated with the union, and proper notice given before they are introduced."
Click the download button for a copy of the guide, or click here for more information on the TUC website.