Autism Friendly Libraries
Suffolk Libraries are also getting behind a new scheme to make libraries accessible and inclusive as possible for children and young people with autism.
The new Autism Friendly Libraries scheme was launched at the recent Society of Chief Librarian’s conference. It was developed by the Association of Senior Children and Education Librarians (ASCEL) working with a social care organisation called Dimensions with funding from the Arts Council. The aim of the scheme is to create spaces within libraries which are inclusive for children who have autism and to support parents and carers of people with autism. It will involve creating and displaying autism friendly resources and changing library spaces to become more autism-friendly.
Research by Dimensions showed that whilst people with autism are already more likely than other people to use a library, a few adjustments could lead to 92% increasing their use of their local library. The scheme is very new and Suffolk Libraries is currently in the process of looking at libraries to see what improvements could be made to ensure they are as autism-friendly as possible.