Following the publication of the Special Educational Needs and Disability Green Paper in March 2011, the Government introduced the Children and Families Bill to Parliament in February 2013.
When it becomes law, this Bill will radically change how young people with autism access services and support. As it stands the key changes will be:
You can read the Children and Families Bill and Explanatory Notes on the UK Parliament website. There is also an accessible version of the Bill for young people created by the Department for Education called The Young Person's Guide to the Children and Families Bill.
You can read our Children and Families Bill FAQ factsheet for parents which contains a number of frequently asked questions about how the Bill will affect the way in which your child receives support.
The Government published a Green Paper that set out the key ideas that they intended to include in the Bill. This Green Paper was subject to Public Consultation. You can read our response (PDF 640KB).
The Bill has been debated by MPs in the House of Commons. MPs looked over the Bill and discussed amendments that they thought might improve it. We provided MPs with briefing notes setting out the key issues for children and young people with autism.
Our report Our Lives in Your Hands (PDF 944KB) tells the stories of nine families of young people with autism and highlights how the reforms proposed in the Children and Families Bill will affect them. The report has been shared with policy makers to help them better understand how the Bill will affect the lives of the children and young people with autism and their families.
The Bill will now be considered by members of the House of Lords. Over a series of scheduled days, Peers will have an opportunity to discuss all parts of the Bill, ask questions of the Minister, Lord Nash, and suggest amendments to the Bill.
We have provided briefings for Peers, and support amendments that will address our key concerns. These are:
You can read our Briefing for Members of the House of Lords (PDF 60KB) we have also worked with collegues at the Assocation of Colleges, and The National Association of Specialist Colleges to produce a Joint Briefing (PDF 95KB) on specific concerns we have around how the Bill will work for young people who are over 18.