Text reads: 'Five reasons Autism Hour is more than just 60 minutes' above 5 clock icons in a row

Here at the National Autistic Society, our Autism Hour campaign is gearing up for its mass event in October. Last year, over 11,000 businesses made adjustments to create a more autism-friendly environment to shop in. These can include, dimming lights, quietening background music as well as supporting staff to learn about autism. We know this can lead to more permanent change, and here are five reasons why:

  1. Hundreds of thousands of staff members learn about autism.
    This is a fantastic opportunity to learn and increase autism understanding for yourself, your staff and your customers. We don’t expect everyone to be an expert, but with our practical advice resources for staff, you can be sure that your business will benefit from a better understanding of autism on a day to day basis.
  2. Many businesses take it further!
    The likes of The Entertainer and Lloyds Banks are some big names who have recognised that more needs to be done to support autistic people, running regular Autism Hours outside of our October event week. Autism Hour is a great first step in addressing your autistic customers’ needs, so you can support them effectively all year around...
  3. You’ll be a community leader.
    Businesses do great things for their community, and setting an example in inclusion and accessibility is a wonderful image for you to have. Supporting your community to be autism-friendly is a wonderful achievement and will mark you out as a leader far beyond October (particularly if you work towards our Autism Friendly Award).
  4. It’s easy!
    Running an Autism Hour requires a few small adjustments, making it simple to run. Last year, 83% of businesses have said they found participating in the Autism Hour event week easy, and many do it monthly or even weekly!
  5. It’s popular!
    In survey after last year’s Autism Hour, two thirds (67%) of people felt their Autism Hour experience was better than a typical shopping experience. To get you thinking of how valuable they are, 93% of respondents said they would be more likely to go to a shop that held a regular quiet hour than one that did not.

Autism Hour has real value for your business beyond the hour itself, and you can read more about it on our Autism Hour hub.