Interviews with Aspens CEO Robbie Shanahan and David Commins, whose son William is supported by us, are part of a feature to be broadcast on ITV Meridian News this evening (23 May 2022). The feature, which can also be viewed on the ITV website, highlights a Brighton man's campaign for 'Niamh's Law' which would see mandatory disability awareness training for public-facing staff following the death of his fiancee Niamh.

Niamh worked with people with disabilities and spoke out passionately on their behalf after experiencing negative attitudes when taking the people she cared for out to public places. She said staff were not aware of the Equality Act and their duty to make reasonable adjustments for disabled people. Niamh's fiancee Drew Taylor has launched a petition to make disability awareness training for public-facing staff mandatory. 

David Commins whose son William, who is supported by Aspens, described how the family have had stressful experiences when out and about, particularly when using public transport and in busy, crowded settings. David said that the inevitable consequence was that it resulted in the family feeling less inclined to go on such trips in the community and that he would welcome a change to the law making disability awareness training mandatory for public-facing staff.

Robbie Shanahan said that raising awareness about disabilities for public-facing staff would be a "game-changer", as it would make visiting businesses a better experience for people with disabilities as well as increasing the likelihood of disabled customers, and their families, bringing their custom back to their businesses. This change would be an important step towards Aspens' overarching vision for an inclusive society where every individual on the autism spectrum and with learning disabilities can thrive as part of their local community.

Watch Aspens feature for ITV Meridian News here

Sign Niamh's Law petition here