Act Now For Autism is a core group of people passionate about the future and well-being of children and adults with autism and associated conditions in the UK.
Act Now For Autism are campaigning against aspects of the Welfare Reform Bill, specifically the WCA, Work Programme and the impact of the changeover to Universal Credit and PIP. We are ardently campaigning for advocacy to be offered to anyone who has to have a face-to-face assessment.
Now For Autism would like to say a collective congratulations to our
very own Anna Kennedy who received her OBE from the Queen today, for her
services to autism.
Anna is one of the founder members of Act
Now For Autism. Anna voiced her concerns about the impact that the cuts
were having and the Work Capability Assessment in the House of Lords
during a cross All Party Group meeting on Disability.
Anna has spent the last twenty years campaigning for greater
understanding, awareness, acceptance and services for children, adults
and families living with autism.
When school, after school
refused to offer Anna’s two sons the right placement, Anna opened her own school
Hillingdon Manor. Hillingdon is a specialist primary for children with autistic
spectrum disorders, and it did not stop there. Since then, Anna has won a
host of awards and has written a book about her struggle to get a good
education for her children.
In Anna’s own words this is why she does what she does:
"Ever since I started my own journey to help those with autism I have
been struck by the woeful lack of facilities there are for people with
this sometimes challenging condition. Of course autism and Aspergers
don’t just affect children and teenagers they are a lifelong condition
for many people who can often face perplexing problems and behavioural
difficulties. The facilities available have never been great and now,
with local authorities and charities suffering from severe cuts, the
situation is getting much worse. While there is naturally a focus on
children with autism and Aspergers I am saddened that older people often
get ignored, as well as their families and friends. Families and carers
need respite breaks, access to better educational facilities and help
with finding employment for their children - its difficult enough for
all young people looking for work these days so having to deal with
autism or Aspergers makes it even harder, and sadly for many they simply
give up trying because of a lack of response and understanding from
employers. I have seen, directly through my own two sons who suffer from
autism, and through countless encounters and discussions with many
young and older people just how much they have to offer. As I said in my
book these people are Not Stupid just different, and often with
enormous skills, intelligence and the ability to master many complex
tasks and projects."
So let’s raise a virtual glass to Anna tonight – congratulations Anna from us all!