Autism (September 2015)

I understand that people with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) can have problems with social interaction and communication, and I am committed to ensuring that people with ASD lead fulfilling and rewarding lives.

I am pleased that the Government has developed an Adult Autism Strategy. This is an essential step towards realising the Government's long-term vision for transforming the lives of adults with autism. The Government's guidance sets a clear direction for how health and social care can continue to implement the Autism Strategy and to further improve services to deliver the vision of fulfilled and rewarding lives for people with autism.

You may be interested to learn that the Government has introduced a new birth-to-25 education, health and care plan which sets out in one place all the support families will receive and help bridge the gap between education and to employment and independent living.

In my view, the transition between school and adulthood is exceptionally hard and I will be monitoring this plan to ensure it brings positive action.

For children, the Government is giving continued funding of £1.5 million to the Autism Education Trust to provide autism training to teachers. This ranges from basic awareness training and practical knowledge through to more advanced training for school leaders. Since 2012, the Trust has arranged training for around 50,000 education staff.

September 2015