Autism and Learning Disability

It is really important that as we move forward consideration is given to adjustment and guidance to assist those with autism and learning disabilities. The current guidance contains only a brief reference to the particular needs of this group in relation to exercise. If restrictions are to be in place for some time it is really important that this is expanded. As an example, non-essential travel is not permitted. However for some people with autism and learning disabilities, a drive in the car might really help to relieve tension and frustration and prevent extreme challenging behaviour. We all want to comply and ensure as much control of the virus as possible - but there needs to be some flexibili Similar consideration should apply in relation to the commencement of health and social care services. Guidance (and support) should be issued to facilitate the early reintroduction of day care and respite services. Health services such as community dental services should also be reintroduced as soon as possible.

Why the contribution is important

Many of those with autism and learning disabilities find the lockdown especially challenging. Routines which allow them to function are completely changed and community support withdrawn. Stress can manifest itself in many ways including challenging behavior. Many will also have epilepsy which can be worsened by stress. Clearer guidance and support towards some sort of new normality is essential for this vulnerable group and their carers.

by mmjsmith83 on May 06, 2020 at 03:51PM

Current Rating

Average rating: 4.2
Based on: 20 votes


  • Posted by Jones17 May 06, 2020 at 16:25

    Consideration will also need to be shown to children & adults with autism who may well struggle with wearing a face covering (my daughter certainly found it unbearable after barely a minute) or gloves (a common issue with those on the spectrum).
  • Posted by CarolGil May 06, 2020 at 16:38

    I would add that children and young people with other more hidden disabilities such as developmental trauma, ADHD and Foetal Alcohol Syndrome will also benefit from flexibility around getting out of the house. For example, several short outings in a day, or driving somewhere within a reasonable distance for exercise to protect themselves and others when impulsive behaviours may make it difficult for them to social distance or understand the need to social distance
  • Posted by hannah_smith May 10, 2020 at 20:12

    Wholeheartedly agree with this submission. The challenges lockdown has brought to those with ASD - and their carers - cannot be overstated. A flexible approach, allowing the particular needs of these individuals (which, as an aside will not necessarily be comprehensively covered in care plans) would be welcome.
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