Dyddiad | Date: 30 August 2017

Pwnc | Subject: Autism (Wales) Bill

The National Assembly for Wales has agreed that I can introduce proposals for a new law in Wales, the Autism (Wales) Bill.

As an individual Member, I have until 13 July 2018 to introduce a Bill that meets the policy objectives set out in an explanatory memorandum to my proposal. My proposed law will then be scrutinised in detail by the National Assembly for Wales, before a final decision is taken on whether it should become law.  If passed, the Bill would become the Autism (Wales) Act.

I am now consulting as widely as possible on what details should be included in this Bill and I would be very grateful if you could find time to contribute to this consultation.

The purpose of the Bill would be to make provision for meeting the needs of children and adults with autism spectrum conditions in Wales. The Bill would also give autism its own statutory identity.

In particular, I intend that the Autism (Wales) Bill would seek to:

- Require the Welsh Government to publish a strategy for meeting the needs of children and adults in Wales with autism spectrum conditions;

- Require the Welsh Government to issue statutory guidance to underpin the strategy;

- Ensure a clear and consistent pathway to diagnosis of autism spectrum conditions in every local area across Wales;

- Ensure that local authorities and health boards understand and take necessary action so that children and adults with autism spectrum conditions get the timely support they need (this might include, for example, putting duties on local authorities and health boards about the organisation of support for people with autism and their families, in their local areas);

- Establish practices, including the possible creation of a register, to enable the collection of reliable and relevant data on the numbers and needs of children and adults with autism spectrum conditions so that responsible local bodies can plan accordingly;

- Require key staff working with people with autism spectrum conditions to undertake autism training;

- Ensure that local authorities and health boards publish information on the services they provide for people with autism spectrum conditions in their areas;

- Regularly review the strategy and statutory guidance to ensure progress;

- Raise public understanding of the needs of children and adults with autism spectrum conditions; and

- Ensure that autistic adults and parents/carers of autistic children are involved in the development and reviews of the autism strategy and statutory guidance

I want everyone who could be affected by this Bill, who has views on it or has expertise to contribute, to have the chance to influence what it contains. 

Once I have considered your response I intend to provide a further opportunity to comment by consulting on a draft Bill. I will then take a final decision on whether to introduce the Bill to the National Assembly for Wales.

The attached document gives further background information on my proposals and asks a number of questions about how the Bill should deal with the issues that I think need to be addressed.

I would, therefore, be very grateful if you could find the time to contribute to this consultation and let me have your or your organisation’s views on the Bill and what it is seeking to achieve.  I look forward to receiving any comments you wish to make by 20 November 2017.

Information you provide may be used by me and other Assembly Members, support staff and Assembly Commission staff, for the purposes of the development of the Member Bill, promotion of the intended effect of the Bill, and subsequent scrutiny of the Bill.

Your name, contact details (if you are responding in your professional capacity) and full response may be published on the National Assembly for Wales website, and potentially in subsequent publications or publicity material. You must make clear in your response if you would it to be anonymised.

Your contact details may be used in order to provide further opportunities to engage in the development and/or scrutiny of the Bill. If you would like to ask a question about how your information will be used please contact Consultation.AutismBill@assembly.wales

For full details about how your information will be used please see the National Assembly for Wales’ privacy policy.

I welcome responses in English and Welsh. I ask organisations with Welsh Language policies / schemes to provide bilingual submissions, in line with their public information policies. I am also publishing this consultation bilingually in Easy Read.

Further information about the Member Bill process can be found at Member Bills.

 

Thank you for your time.

Yours faithfully,

 

 

Paul Davies
Assembly Member for Preseli Pembrokeshire

Croesewir gohebiaeth yn Gymraeg neu Saesneg.
We welcome correspondence in Welsh or English.