Greater Anglia pledges to increase autism awareness

Friday, 16 March 2018

Greater Anglia is increasing awareness and understanding of autism among colleagues so that they better support people on the autistic spectrum – both customers and colleagues.

The rail operator has partnered with the Sycamore Trust to host “autism awareness hours” at different locations around the Greater Anglia network.

The events will give staff the opportunity to find out more about how they can help people on the autism spectrum.

The idea has been championed by Alex Thompson, who works at Greater Anglia’s Stratford training academy, who is autistic.

Sessions will be held throughout the year in Stratford, Crown Point depot in Norwich, Ilford depot and at Colchester station.

These sessions equip staff with the skills needed to support autism in the workplace, learn how to help autistic customers and to provide a greater understanding of the autism spectrum.

Rebecca Richardson, Greater Anglia’s Accessibility Manager, said: “We want all of our customers to have a good experience while travelling with us. We know some people on the autistic spectrum can find public transport daunting, which is why we are developing our colleagues to be able to help in these situations.

“Greater Anglia is an inclusive employer, and these sessions will help staff develop a greater understanding of autism and learn how best to support people who have been diagnosed with the condition.”

Alex Thompson, Academy Host, said: “Autism awareness is very close to my heart, so I am very pleased that Greater Anglia is offering these sessions to colleagues. It’s really important that people are aware of ways in which they can help someone on the autism spectrum, so we can continue offer the best possible service to all passengers.”