Autism Hour – UK 10,000 – Australia 1
Fun Fact it will take you 17 hours and 25 minutes to fly from Perth non-stop to London and it will cost you $1,147 excluding accommodation.
Fun Fact my nearest Coles will take me 7 minutes and is 4.3 k away.
Fun Fact the United Kingdom is beating us with the amount of shops that take part in Autism Hour.
Let that sink in.
So here’s the thing have you actually heard of Autism Hour?
Do you even know what it is?
Well here’s an explanation
Autism Hour – What is it?
For Autistic people, the world can seem full of too much information – and too little understanding.
Let’s compare the facts shall we so that I can offer you a balanced viewpoint here
IN THE UK:
There are 700,000 autistic people in the UK. Along with their families, that’s over 3 million customers waiting to be welcomed into your business.
Over 99% of people have heard of Autism, but only 16% of Autistic people feel the public understand them.
So, we’re asking shops and businesses to organise an Autism Hour and take simple steps for 60 minutes that lead to a more Autism-friendly world.
So the National Autistic Society (UK) managed to get over 10,000 shops to sign up to the national Autistic Quiet hour between the 6th and the 13th October.
If you live in the UK here, then is an interactive map so that you can locate which shops and business take part in such an important event.
There are currently 230,000 Australians who are Autistic.
In Australia only one shop operates it.
Let that fact (not a fun fact sink in)
In Australia here is a list of the Coles stores which operate a quiet hour each Tuesday between the hours of 10.30 and 11.30 in WA.
Butler (Brighton Village)
Clarkson (Ocean Keys)
And around the rest of Australia;
NEW SOUTH WALES
Tea Tree Plaza
Casuarina — Bradshaw St
And while this is great I think we should look back at the numbers 10,000 shops in the UK have signed up for Autism hour, whereas only one business has here in Australia and it’s a supermarket.
Now look I’m not knocking Coles for taking a giant leap of faith here, but surely we can’t be seen to be behind the UK when it comes to offering one day a week where Autistic people can shop without being confronted by noise and distractions that come from shopping outside of the designated day of the week (that being Tuesday) and while it has been met with some criticism by those in the Autism Community it’s a step forward that no other business appears to want to take/become involved in.
The downside to the UK Autism hour is that it only happens once a year, here Coles are trailing it so we will have to wait to see if they will be keeping this program running.
But surely there are economic benefits to businesses operating such a scheme?
I’m not an economics expert but given the current economic climate where it’s every business verses the internet (a bloody battle you’ll agree) it’s one that business can’t afford to ignore.
Why should I be excluded from coming into your shop/business?
What trouble will it be to you to turn down the lights, lower the volume on the radio/music centre, be a little bit less noisy?
The answer – NOTHING
It’s pretty disgraceful if you ask me.
I think it’s time we caught up with the UK.
We’ve only got 9,999 shops to go to sign up for it.
It shouldn’t be that difficult right?
Carry on the Conversation
What are your thoughts on why local business don’t partake in Autism Hour? What needs to be done to change that?
Let me know in the comments below.
As always, I can also be found on Twitter: @AutisticNick9 and at my email firstname.lastname@example.org
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Thank you for reading and I will see you next time for more thoughts from across the spectrum.