The Leeds Autism Partnership Board and its work

In 2010, a group of people – autistic people, carers and workers from health, social services, children’s services, provider services and education – got together to write a strategy to say how we should make things in Leeds better for people with autism.

We consulted a lot of people, signed it off (this means that important people agreed it) and then published it.

It is called Leeds Autism Strategy 2011-2014. You can read it by following the link below:

Autism Strategy accessible version

The main things recommended in the Leeds strategy are:

  • A partnership board to lead on the work that needs to be done
  • Specialist training and awareness raising
  • A diagnostic and assessment service
  • Good quality assessment
  • Transitions and Partnership
  • Information
  • Universal services such as employment, education, leisure, housing and health should be able to help people on the autistic spectrum.
  • Joined-up commissioning

Why did we do this work?

We wrote the Leeds Strategy because parliament had passed the Autism Act (2009) and the government wrote a national autism Strategy “Fulfilling and Rewarding lives”. There is now an update to this called “Think Autism”. These highlight many of the same needs as we see in Leeds.

What are we doing now?

We have an Autism partnership board now. It started in January 2011 and meets every three months. It is responsible for influencing and guiding partner bodies and evaluating the progress of the strategy. People who sit on the board come from all the key agencies and interest groups who will be able to help to bring about improvements in the wellbeing of people with autism.

People with autism and carers are an important part of the partnership board – we have two groups:

  1. The reference group for people with autism and;
  2. The carers’ reference group

These meet every three months too. They decide what things they want the partnership board to discuss; three members of each group go to the partnership board. We also have a group for providers which meet every three months.

The dates and venues for this year’s groups are here:

The membership of the partnership Board is here:

The papers from the groups in June 2014 will be here soon:

If you would like any of the papers from older groups ,please contact Helen below.

If you would like to know more about any of these groups, or join any of them, you can find contact details at the bottom of this page.

What has got better since we wrote the strategy?

We are lucky as we have some very enthusiastic and helpful people in Leeds. In the past two and a half years we have:

  • A permanent diagnostic service in Leeds
  • Social workers who are autism champions in their teams
  • Have an autism information website – This one!
  • All job centre staff have had autism awareness training
  • We have an autism training social enterprise
  • A lot of staff have had various sorts of training
  • Police and probation come to the partnership board
  • Volunteers have been trained to be autism advocates
  • Voluntary sector providers organised a very good information day

We have a work plan so we can see how we are getting on with all the different tasks. We know there is still other work to do.

What happens next?

As you can see we have done some of the things we wanted to do from the last strategy. So this autumn we will look at the strategy again and decide what the most important things are to try to do next. We will be asking for your ideas, and asking for your views about what things are most important.

For more information on the partnership board and the strategy, please contact:

Helen Gee
Commissioning and Development Officer (Autistic Spectrum Conditions)

Adult Social Care
3rd Floor
Enterprise House
12 St Paul’s Street
Leeds LS1 2LE

Tel: 0113 378 3839
Email: [email protected]