Even though more than 1 in 100 people in the UK are autistic, many of them and their families still struggle to access essential community spaces, businesses and shops.

The National Autistic Society’s Autism Friendly Award champions premises who commit to making sure that autistic visitors receive the same warm welcome as everybody else.

This doesn’t mean investing in expensive alterations or training your staff to be autism experts. Small changes can make a massive difference to autistic visitors and just a little understanding can go a long way.

The Roman Baths receiving their Autism Friendly Award in May 2016

The Roman Baths, Bath receiving their Autism Friendly Award in May 2016.

We have worked with everyone from airports, heritage sites to sports arenas, local hairdressers and high street stores. Every customer facing organisation, whatever their size or business, can benefit from becoming autism-friendly.

Reviewing your premises and the services that you offer from the perspective of an autistic person will help you to identify the challenges stopping them from regularly using your business. When you consider families and carers, 2.8million lives are directly affected by autism in the UK. That is a number that no business can ignore and just goes to show that good customer service is an autism-friendly service.