The National Autistic Society describe autism as a lifelong developmental disability that affects how people perceive the world and interact with others.
Autistic people see, hear and feel the world differently to other people. If you are autistic, you are autistic for life; autism is not an illness or disease and cannot be 'cured'. Often people feel being autistic is a fundamental aspect of their identity.
Autism is a spectrum condition. All autistic people share certain difficulties, but being autistic will affect them in different ways. Some autistic people also have learning disabilities, mental health issues or other conditions, meaning people need different levels of support. All people on the autism spectrum learn and develop. With the right sort of support, all can be helped to live a more fulfilling life of their own choosing.
The Adult Autism Service for City and Hackney is run by East London Foundation Trust (ELFT) and offers diagnosis, brief interventions and advice to adults living in City and Hackney who have not had a previous diagnosis. You need to be 18 or over and registered with a City and Hackney GP.
The Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service which is also run by ELFT offers diagnosis for children and young people.
Children and young people
Support for children, young people and their parents/carers can be found on the Local Offer.
A communication card has been designed by the Autism Alliance Board's Experts by Experience group.
You can decide when and where to show your card and it has been designed to help in situations where you may find verbal communication difficult or impossible.
Support for carers is provided by City & Hackney Carers Centre. They can also conduct a carers assessment of need.
GPs and other primary care professionals
The Royal College of General Practitioners have produced an Autism Spectrum Disorders Toolkit for use by primary care professionals.
Criminal Justice Services
The National Autistic Society have produced a guide for police officers and staff.
Local businesses can apply for The National Autistic Society’s Autism Friendly Award.
Page updated: 07 May 2019