5 December 2019
A new Senate Select Committee on Autism has been established. The committee is made up of politicians who will look into the services, support and life outcomes for autistic people in Australia.
What will the committee look into?
The committee will look at a wide range of issues relating to autism – including diagnosis, education, health including mental health, employment, justice and rights, and housing.
All the issues that the committee will look at (the terms of reference) can be found on its website.
Who can talk to the committee?
The committee wants to talk to people about autism. The committee wants to hear from anyone who has experience with autism.
In particular, the committee is very interested to hear from autistic people who want to share their story. Noting that the experiences of children and adults with autism are varied, the Chair of the committee, Senator Hollie Hughes said:
"It is important that the committee understands what life is like for autistic people. The committee wants to hear from autistic people in their own words. So if you want to share your story, please contact the committee."
How can you contact the committee?
If you want the committee to hear your story or you have ideas about how to make services better for autistic people, please contact the committee.
You can email the committee at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or you can telephone the committee (02) 6277 3521.
If you write to the committee and agree that your letter can be put on the internet, so it can be read by other people, your letter will be called a submission.
If you are not sure what to do or you have questions, please email or call us.
What will the committee do?
Step 1: The committee will read all the information sent to it. Some of that information will be published on the committee website. All written information should be sent to the committee before 14 April 2020.
Step 2: The committee will organise public hearings. That means it will ask people to come and talk to the committee about autism and services for autistic people.
Step 3: When the committee has finished its work in October 2021, it will write a report for the Parliament. The report will be made public. It will say what the committee has done.
The report will also say what the Australian Government needs to do to improve the services and support for autistic people in Australia.
Committee webpage, including inquiry terms of reference: www.aph.gov.au/ParliamentaryBusiness/Committees/Senate/Autism/autism
How to make a submission: www.aph.gov.au/ParliamentaryBusiness/Committees/Senate/Howtomakeasubmission