17 May 2017
A group of young people provided autism awareness training to Cabinet members at Bute House on Tuesday (16 May).
REACH for autism demonstrated how people with autism might react to police questioning today in a powerful training session for Ministers in the Scottish Cabinet. The training was delivered through a mixture of interactive theatre and excerpts from their play 'In Our World: A Day on the Spectrum'. Cabinet members had the opportunity to ask the young people questions about their experience. Watch First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Justice Secretary Michael Matheson's impressions here.
Posted by The Scottish Government on Tuesday, 16 May 2017
Held in the drawing room, the Greenock-based group – REACH for Autism – performed a variety of excerpts from their play In Our World: A Day on the Spectrum. The scenes portrayed the difficulties young people can face in the school playground, in the classroom, or experiences with police officers when their needs are not recognised, or addressed. Individuals also delivered their personal accounts to the audience.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said:
“The training provided by REACH for Autism was really powerful, and the presenters were absolutely fantastic – really brave and strong young people.”
“It has huge relevance for education, the criminal justice system, and for employability services. It’s all about trying to make sure that people with autism get the same chances in life as anybody else, to understand the challenges they face and help them to address those challenges.”
— Leslie Evans (@PermSecScot) May 16, 2017
After the performance and training, Cabinet members were given the opportunity to talk to the young people about their experience.
REACH for Autism regularly delivers training to schools, and is currently working alongside Police Scotland in Inverclyde on interacting with individuals with autism.