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First hurdle overcome for autism bill

02/03/2009 Joanna
A bill that would see autistic children offered more support by their local authorities has managed to counter government opposition by gaining support in parliament.

In news that may interest Sencos and other school staff involved in special needs education, a private member's bill introduced by Chesham and Amersham MP Cheryl Gillan has now gained support from the majority of politicians.

If enforced, the proposed legislation could see councils being forced to ensure that autistic people are given proper support and provision in a number of fields, including education.

A vote conducted in parliament on Friday saw a majority of 106 MPs voting against the bill being 'talked out', which means that the proposed legislation will now have a second reading.

Commenting on the bill recently, Ms Gillian stated: "Without the right help autism can have a profound and sometimes devastating effect, so I will keep campaigning until I hear the government pledge to fully support people affected by autism".

According to the National Autistic Society, there are currently half a million children and adults with autism in the UK.
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