The Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Action Plan was launched by the Welsh Government in April 2008.
It introduced specific guidelines on autism for local agencies, including local authorities and local health boards for the first time. Wales was the first administration within the UK to adopt a strategy for autism.
NAS Cymru has been working hard over a number of years first to influence the content of the action plan and then to support implementation, in consultation with people with autism, their parents and carers.
As a result of our campaigning, we ensured that the action plan included specific actions to address the difficulties faced by adults on the spectrum. Our work meant that two Task and Finish Groups were set up to advise the Welsh Government on how it could improve services for adults. This resulted in the establishing of a clinical network for assessing diagnosing autism in adults. You can read the Task and Finish Group report here.
We also led several working groups that developed a number of information booklets, published by the Welsh Government. These included one for families and one for practitioners who work with families. They can be found here
Key actions set out in the action plan include:
- the appointment of someone who will take responsibility for autism in each local authority
- the establishing of a local stakeholder group in each council area, to plan and development services, which should include parents and carers and people with autism.
- the development of a local autism action plan
If you would like information about the stakeholder group in your area, please email email@example.com.
Refreshing the Action Plan
The Welsh Government has said that it will ‘refresh’ the action plan later this year.
To inform the refresh, three events were held across Wales at the end of last year, run jointly by NAS Cymru, Autism Cymru and Autism Initiatives, seeking the views of people with autism and their families.
NAS Cymru believes that the refresh provides an excellent opportunity to influence the next stage of the plan. We will let you know how you can get involved with the refresh via the website so that the Action Plan continues to meet the needs of people in Wales with autism, their families and their carers.
You can also keep up to date on the Strategic Action Plan by becoming our friend on Facebook: www.facebook.com/NASCymru or following us on Twitter: @nascymru.
An updated Autistic Spectrum Disorder Strategic Action Plan will be in place for 2014-15.