Many of the hundreds of Borderers who live with autism will have experienced ridicule and abuse, says a local group welcoming new research.
The Autistica charity’s One in a Hundred report, records the views of one in every 100 families across the UK of the experiences of living with the condition.
More than 600,000 people in the UK have autism and Autistica chief executive, Christine Swabey, says it is unacceptable that 94 per cent of parents worry about the future of their child with autism and 75 per cent of adults with the condition report insufficient help.
She added: “It is clear that there is much to do, but with the support and partnership of families across the UK we remain ambitious that we can fund pioneering research that will bring real change.”
Autistica will continue to fund research into early diagnosis and early intervention.
Derek Purvis, chairman of the Borders Asperger and Autism Group, says diagnosis and awareness of the conditions are the highest priority.
“There are hundreds of autistic people in the Borders and getting them to tell their story or their experiences is almost impossible,” Mr Purvis told us. “The reason is that often they live with ridicule, abuse and torment from ‘normal’ members of our society who do not understand the behaviours which are often associated with the condition.
“Every adult with a diagnosis will have a story to tell about their fight to get a diagnosis, their fight to be accepted and their families will have had an even tougher fight.”
Free legal advice for carers is on offer at Focus Ability Centre, Galashiels, on April 26, May 31 and June 28. Contact Borders Asperger and Autism Group for appointments.