The National Autistic Taskforce is wholly run and managed by autistic people and is funded through an open grant from The Shirley Foundation. This guide is authored entirely by autistic people with extensive collective knowledge and experience of social care provision to autistic people.
This guide is intended to apply to the whole autism spectrum and to both children and adults. We explicitly include autistic people with and without learning disabilities; those considered to have complex needs; those who do and don’t use speech to communicate; those considered to display “challenging behaviour”; those with dual and additional diagnoses of all kinds; those with and without ‘forensic’ history. The guide covers all care settings, including: conventional housing options, whether alone, with others or with family members; those who are homeless; shared lives and similar arrangements; all forms of supported living; residential care environments and (whilst we believe that all care can and should be delivered in community settings) institutional environments such as Assessment and Treatment Units, Psychiatric Units, Secure Psychiatric Hospitals and Units, Secure accommodation, prisons, Young Offender’s Institutions and any other environment in which an autistic person lives. This guide has been written primarily with Care Providers, Care Commissioners and Inspectorates as the target readership. However, readers from other care contexts are encouraged to creatively consider how these recommendations can be implemented in their unique circumstances.
This guide places a heavy emphasis on the development of autonomy. The more autonomy a person has, the less support services need to rely on external authorities such as good practice guides, instead looking to the person themselves as the primary source of information, instruction and guidance. The intention is to move beyond co-production towards autistic leadership. This guide sets out some of the practical details involved in achieving self-determination for autistic people.