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Autism

Work and Pensions written question – answered on 13th May 2002.

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Photo of Stephen Ladyman Stephen Ladyman Labour, South Thanet

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what training employment advisers are given in respect of the needs of people with autistic spectrum disorders who are seeking work.

Photo of Maria Eagle Maria Eagle The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

The administration of Jobcentre Plus is a matter for the chief executive, Leigh Lewis. I have asked him to reply to my hon. Friend.

Letter from Leigh Lewis to Dr. Stephen Ladyman, dated 13 May 2002

As Jobcentre Plus is an Executive Agency, the Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your question concerning the training employment advisers are given in respect of the needs of people with autistic spectrum disorders who are seeking work.

Disability awareness open learning materials are available to all advisers, and are an important pre-requisite for attendance on all disability training courses. The open learning materials contain information provided by the National Autistic Society and its associated 'Prospects' employment programme to support people with Asperger syndrome. The topics covered are;

What is autism?

What causes autism?

What is Asperger syndrome?

What causes Asperger syndrome?

Tips for advisers

Useful techniques for interviewing

Potential benefits of employing people with autism/Aspergers syndrome

Difficulties that may occur in the work place

Employment Support

Where to go for more help

In addition, advisers have access to a Special Needs External Organisations Directory which includes information on autism and Asperger syndrome.

I hope this is helpful.

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