Home People Autism awareness training for frontline staff

Autism awareness training for frontline staff

Great Western Railway (GWR) has provided bespoke autism awareness to its 3,500 frontline staff.

The train operator has not previously included special requirements for those living with autism but has done so with the help of charity Anna Kennedy Online to help its staff better meet customers’ needs.

There are around 700,000 people in the UK living with autism, which causes distress and anxiety around such issues as processing information but also the need for structure and reassurance.

GWR said that this programme is improving how it delivers customer service, emphasising the need for a tailored and personalised service for all customers.

Like this story? Follow us on Facebook to keep up to date on rail industry news

Watch Austin Hughes, who lives with autism and developed GWR’s awareness training programme, discuss the challenges of travelling with the condition. 

Charity founder Anna Kennedy said: “As a parent of two young men, travelling by train this has always been a difficult experience due to my youngest son who has significant sensory issues.

“Whistles blowing, crowded and noisy stations, doors banging; it can be a bit full-on and cause him anxiety. By sharing information with all staff this will hopefully help create a less stressful journey.”

Read more: Recognition for Newcastle College’s Transport Academy



Powering excellence

Stephen Royle. A new company, Breserv, is setting out to be the ‘Go to Company’ for all electrical...

The lockdown eases, replaced by confusion

As the lockdown starts to ease, it brings with it a degree of uncertainty and worry. Two months ago,...

Professor Felix Schmid steps down

Felix Schmid has retired from his post as Professor of Railway Systems Engineering at the University of Birmingham after 15 years.

Will the railway be reclassified?

Should the railways remain in the private sector? Or are they, effectively, already nationalised after the government’s emergency measures taken as part...

The one that got away

This year’s Railsport National Angling Championships, due to take place on 12 August 2020 at Makins Fisheries, has been cancelled as a...