As a member of The Autism Alliance, a UK partnership of not for profit organisations that support autistic people and their families, Aspens is supporting its Breaking Point Campaign.

Research commissioned by The Autism Alliance shows that thousands of autistic adults across England are not receiving the social care they need, preventing them from living well and actively in their communities, and from taking up work. A lack of care also means that too many autistic adults reach crisis point, leading to family breakdown and confinement in mental health hospitals.

Their research found:

  • There is a gap in specialist social care for autistic adults.
  • Alongside this, there is likely to be an even larger gap in specialist community based support for autistic adults without a learning disability or with a mild learning disability.
  • Although many autistic adults meet the eligibility criteria in the Care Act 2014, they are still denied the care they need, and have to fight at every stage of the process. The law is effectively being broken every day across England.
  • This is because of long term Government underinvestment in the adult social care sector and its workforce, together with a range of other barriers in the system, including a lack of autism acceptance and understanding, and a focus on responding to crisis rather than maintaining wellbeing.
  • Building the Right Support, and other actions to increase access to the right care, are not working.

This campaign highlights the profound consequences of the crisis in social care for autistic adults and their families in England, and calls for Government to act by:

  • Investing additional funding to close the gap in care for autistic adults in England, recognising the unacceptable outcomes they face, and also the economic benefits of providing the right support. This would represent between 0.4% and 0.7% of total adult social care spending in England, together with the cost of specialist workforce recruitment, retention and training, and could be paid for by addressing inefficiencies in current spending across health and care. 
  • Engaging with wider reform of adult social care, using the experiences of autistic adults and their families as a guide to better care for everyone: and as part of this, quantifying and addressing the larger gap in specialist community-based support for autistic people and their families.

We will be supporting the campaign through a series of posts on our social media and please do help the campaign to have a bigger impact by doing as many of the following as you're able to:

  • Sharing posts about the Campaign on your own social media and using the hashtag #BreakingPointCampaign.
  • Writing to your MP and/or Metro Mayor in England to draw attention to the unacceptable failure of social care for autistic adults, sharing the campaign report and new research, and asking them to write to the Prime Minister and Secretary of State for Health and Social Care.
  • Signing up as a supporter of Real Change for autistic people and their families. Sign up here
  • Joining the wider group of organisations and people calling for systemic reform to address the unacceptable inequalities autistic people face across services and society.

Read more on The Autism Alliance website here.

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