I have come across a number of articles in various publications, which highlight the difficulties that individuals on the Autistic Spectrum are having when it comes to getting groceries delivered to their homes.
If you are deemed as in the high risk category by the Government, you should have been given a priority slot for deliveries, however if your health issue or disability does not fit their criteria, you have to rely on neighbours or family members to get supplies.
Autism is not in the Government list.
Getting through to your local Asda/Sainsbury/Tesco is another story, and waiting for 4 hours to be connected (or not) is average. Explaining you cannot leave home with your autistic child, to stand in a queue at the supermarket, is met with the same response, that unless you have a letter from the Government, you have to queue up with everyone else.
If only they knew the full story. It is not like, you just jump on a bus,car or train to get to the shops! Getting dressed and out the house can take an hour at least, and that is just the start of it.
No mention of the fact that you have to navigate the journey by struggling to get on and off 2 buses and walk along streets, while trying to prevent your child from straying too close to anyone in the vicinity, for fear of transmission of coronavirus. Social Distancing? Not a chance!
Good news though, at last. It took a group of people in Sheffield to change the supermarkets minds.
On the 22nd May, Tesco announced that they are now allowing people with Autism to access their home delivery service. I can personally vouch for this to be the case.
Tesco customers who aren’t on the UK Government’s list can ask to access the priority slots by calling 0800 917 7359.
The change in the rules by Tesco came about after up to 300 disabled people approached Fry Law solicitors in Sheffield to help them. The Equality Act 2010 was used by the firm to help the large supermarkets revisit their policies.