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Autism Friendly Charter

How is the Autism Friendly Charter supporting a more inclusive community?

The Autism Friendly Charter is an initiative designed to support Australian businesses and organisations to become more inclusive through the development of autism friendly spaces, and applying autism considered practices to support the wider autistic community.

It also helps the autism community to learn more about and get greater access to businesses that are autism aware.

Coloured blocks on top of the words autism friendly an autism sa initiative

How does the Autism Friendly Charter benefit the autism community?

The Autism Friendly Charter is designed to help businesses and organisations understand autism and show them how small changes to their operating environment could increase participation from people on the autism spectrum, their families and carers.

According to the 2018 Disability, Ageing and Carers, Australia: Summary of Findings, only around 4% of the more than 200,000 people in Australia on the spectrum believe that businesses, organisations and venues across the country understand autism, or know how to support individuals with autism through the provision of autism-friendly places and services.

This means that a significant majority of people on the autism spectrum with sensory, communication and social interaction differences are not being made to feel welcome in retail spaces, leisure facilities or service providers across the country.

By signing up to the Autism Friendly Charter, businesses can play a crucial role in creating a more inclusive community for all, ensuring that people with autism are able to enjoy services and participate in activities without the experience negatively impacting on wellbeing.

The initiative has already been extremely successful, with many charter organisations holding autism-friendly quiet hours, events and activities, and making permanent adjustments to the way they operate.


Visit the Autism Friendly Charter website and find out more.



How does the Autism Friendly Charter benefit businesses and organisations?

The Autism Friendly Charter is a free online learning platform that gives advice and guidance to businesses and organisations about how to be more inclusive, and in so doing demonstrates their commitment to a socially inclusive community.

Any business can join no matter where in Australia they are located, and the training will help to increase an organisation’s autism awareness and guide its transition to an autism-friendly environment. It will also show how small adjustments to the way in which they operate can significantly increase participation from people on the autism spectrum.

The range of businesses that have signed up to the Autism Friendly Charter include:

  • Sports clubs
  • Cinemas
  • Supermarkets
  • Shopping centres
  • Playgrounds
  • Restaurants
  • Dentists
  • Doctors
  • Hairdressers
  • Swimming pools
  • Recreation centres
  • Museums
  • Driver education centres


Visit the Autism Friendly Charter website and find out more.

The Autism Friendly app

The Autism Friendly app is designed to help people on the spectrum and their families to discover places and spaces that are committed to supporting an inclusive society.

Free to download and install on a smartphone or tablet, the Autism Friendly app can be used to find places to eat and drink, recreation facilities, or retail spaces that cater for people with autism anywhere in Australia.

The listings provide all the information you need to help you choose autism friendly businesses and service providers, including services such as designated quiet times, autism aware staff, calm spaces and much more.



How to download the Autism Friendly app

The Autism Friendly app is available free for iOS and Android users.

Visit the Autism Friendly Charter website and find out more.

Autism SA Statement on Language Use

Language is a powerful way to promote positivity and to change perceptions, attitudes and beliefs.

There are many ways in which the autism spectrum is described and different ways in which autistic individual/individuals on the autism spectrum prefer to be identified.

There are generally two language preferences;

‘Person first language’ (‘person with autism’) aims to put the person before their disability. ‘Person first’ language includes terminology such as “person with autism,’ ‘people on the autism spectrum,’ or ‘individual with autism’, ‘person with an Autism Spectrum Disorder’

 ‘Identity first language’ (‘autistic person’), reflects the belief that being autistic is a core part of a person’s identity. includes ‘autistic,’ ‘autistic person,’ or ‘autistic individual’.

Autism SA is committed to ensuring that all views are represented in our written and spoken language.

To ensure we are reflecting the diversity of language preferences within the Autism SA community, we, as an organisation, use both ‘Person First’ and ‘Identify First’ language in written and spoken language.

Is your business truly inclusive

Visit the Autism Friendly Charter and complete the free business and staff training. You will also receive a free listing on our Autism Friendly Business Directory.

Autism Friendly Charter Website