Autism and Justice
SIR – We recently met Robert Buckland, the Justice Secretary, to consider the barriers that disabled people – and autistic people in particular – face in the criminal justice system. We discussed examples of support, including liaison and diversion services, intermediaries and appropriate adults. But we agreed that the needs of vulnerable people in the system are too often not understood, which can result in unfair treatment and possible miscarriages of justice.
As we look beyond the pandemic, we call on the Chancellor of the Exchequer to make clear the Government’s commitment to improving autistic people’s experiences of the criminal justice system by properly funding its upcoming all-age national autism strategy. Our all-party parliamentary groups would be happy to help civil servants in these matters.
Dame Cheryl Gillan MP (Con) Chair, All-Party Parliamentary Group on Autism Dr Lisa Cameron MP (SNP) Chair, All-Party Parliamentary Group on Disability Mark Harper MP (Con) Chair, All-Party Parliamentary Group on Learning Disability