When you are inviting candidates to attend your meeting, remember that all registered
charities need to follow Charity Commission guidelines and avoid political bias. That
means that you should invite candidates from all of the main political parties to attend
your meeting, not just a candidate from one party.
1 in a 100 people has autism. Together with their families and carers, they make up around 2
million people in the UK, or 3000 in the average constituency. Many people with autism
struggle to get the support they need to reach their potential – children with autism are three
times more likely to have a mental health problem than other children and just 15% of adults
are in full time employment.
As a result of the National Autistic Society’s I Exist campaign and the passing of the Autism
Act in October 2009, the Government developed the Adult Autism Strategy to set out how it
would meet the needs of people with autism. This was made possible by the support of
parliamentarians from all parties who met with people affected by autism and their
organisations, tabled questions and voted for this landmark piece of legislation – the first ever
disability-specific law in England.
The work is not yet done. The Autism Act requires that the Statutory Guidance that flows from
the Strategy must be published by the end of the year. This will set out how local authorities
and health bodies should support people with autism. Although the Strategy was a great step
forward, people with autism across the UK still need politicians on their side to make that this
guidance is robust and really delivers change for people locally.
We would like to meet with you to talk about the issues that people with autism face and how
you can support them after the general election.
[In particular we would like to talk to you about XXX, which is a big issue facing our
[Paragraph about the group, who will be going (i.e. parents/people with autism)]
I do hope that you will be able to meet with us to discuss the very important issues facing
people that are affected by autism. I look forward to hearing back from you soon.
[Your name and address here – if not all members of your group live in the same
constituency, it is advisable for at least one member who lives in the candidates constituency
to sign the letter and attend the meeting]