Representing Members

Representing Members

Autism Tasmania works to ensure that the voice of the Tasmanian Autistic community is heard – loud and clear!

We work to shape the programs and policies at local, state, and national levels. This includes submissions to influence the range of reforms to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

Your views are valued.  To share them please contact our CEO:

The details of our current advocacy activities are set out under the below sections.

  1. National Autism Strategy
  2. Senate Select Committee on Autism
  3. Tasmanian Autism Alliance
  4. National Guidelines
  5. Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability
  6. NDIS submissions
  7. National Disability Strategy
  8. Tasmanian – Accessible Island
  9. Local Councils Accessibility action plans
  10. State Election and Budgets
  11. Federal Election

  1. National Autism Strategy

Quick Read Points about the National Autism Strategy:

  • We have been asking and now the Government is listening. This is an opportunity to drive real change in creating better access and outcomes for Autistic Australians.
  • The Strategy will be for all Autistic Australians.
  • It will cover reform areas like services, healthcare, education, and employment.
  • It will help guide a coordinated, national approach to supporting Autistic people.
  • The Strategy is being developed to help ALL Autistic people have access to better opportunities in life.

National Autism Strategy – Help Shape the Change 

In 2022, the Australian Government announced the development of a National Autism Strategy.

The Strategy will be for all Autistic Australians. It will cover key reform areas including access to services, healthcare, education, and employment. It will help to guide a more coordinated, national approach supporting autistic people at each stage of life.

The Strategy is being developed to help Autistic people across Australia have better opportunities in life.

It will help make sure Autistic people have better access to services and opportunities throughout their lives.

Why is the National Autism Strategy important? 

There is a growing number of Australians on the spectrum and with other neurodevelopmental conditions. Its time for Autistic people to be heard and for outcomes to be improved in key areas such as education, services access, health and mental health and employment.

  • A National Autism Strategy will improve life outcomes for all Autistic people in Australia.
  • It will provide, for the first time, a coordinated national approach to services and supports for Autistic Australians and their families.

How will the National Autism Strategy be developed?  

It is important that we listen carefully to Autistic people about what is happening and what they want and need from a national strategy.  Autistic people, their families, and carers are invited to help develop the Strategy. Community Consultation is NOW OPEN and closes 30th October 2023.

We Need Your Help
There is no better voice than lived experience to inform this strategy.

It’s time for Autistic people to be heard and life outcomes to be improved:

  • There is a 20-year gap in life expectancy compared with the general population
  • Autistic people are 7 times more likely to be unemployed than people without disability.
  • Autistic people have a higher risk of homelessness.

Questions to think about:

  • What would help Autistic people thrive?
  • What current supports need improvement?
  • What have your experiences told you about where the greatest need is?
  • What do you want people to know about the Autistic lived experience?
We’ve been heard, now join us in shaping Change!
We are pleased to let you know that we have negotiated commitment from the National Strategy Team to listen and recognise Tasmanian autistic voices. Any autistic person who attends a National Autism Strategy session listed below and provides their valuable insight and feedback will be eligible for a $75 Gift Card as recognition of their contribution.

Additionally, Autism Tasmania is coordinating with our contacts and community across the state to ensure that targeted sessions are held to ensure that everyone gets a chance to have their say and shape change for our community.

What is the difference between ‘Autism Tasmania Led’ and ‘Government Led’?
On behalf on the Department of Social Services, The Social Deck have been appointed to coordinate 4 community events in each state to inform the National Autism Strategy which are the ‘Government Led’ options above. Autism Tasmania would like to ensure that all of our Tasmanian autistic community have the opportunity to provide their feedback and insight which is why we are hosting additional events across various platforms to provide further opportunities, these are the ‘Autism Tasmania Led’ sessions listed above.

To book attendance at an Autism Tasmania Led Session use these links:

To book attendance at Federally Led sessions use these links: 


There is also an online Ideas Wall, access by clicking here. where you can post ideas, messages, and comments.

No idea is too small to share

Whatever way you want to engage, we want to hear it! 

  • Come along to a feedback session using the links above
  • Drop by our Facebook and leave a comment or send us a message
  • Call us for a chat on: (03) 6722 5000 OR email our Advisors, they would love to talk more
  • Visit our website to learn more.
Resources to Explore and Share
We have compiled the links to a handy list of resources to explain the National Autism Strategy: 

A National Autism Strategy was identified to be needed to improve the life outcomes of Autistic Australians.
Autism Tasmania is a founding member of the Australian Autism Alliance.
Together we asked for this pre-election and the Australian government responded with a commitment to the co-design and development of a National Autism Strategy (Strategy) that is informed by the experiences of autistic people, their families and carers, and those who work to support them.

This will involve a comprehensive co-design and national consultation process that will draw in views from the full diversity and representative range of the autistic community and the autism and disability sectors.

The national consultation process and co-design of the Strategy are to be guided by an Oversight Council and assisted by four Working Groups considering:

  1. Social inclusion.
  2. Economic inclusion.
  3. Diagnosis, supports and services.
  4. National Roadmap to Improve the Health and Mental Health of Autistic People.

The members of the Oversight Council and the first three Working Groups are to be appointed by the Minister for Social Services, The Hon. Amanda Rishworth MP, who has overall responsibility for the development and implementation of the Strategy. The National Roadmap to Improve the Health and Mental Health of Autistic People Working Group is being established by the Commonwealth Department of Health and Aged Care.

We encourage you or anyone else you think relevant to consider expressing your interest in participating in the Oversight Council and/or Working Groups 1, 2, or 3, by clicking on this link:

This link will take you to information that includes more detailed Background Information and Frequently Asked Questions document and the expression of interest form.

We look forward to the National Autism Strategy being developed WITH THE VOICE OF TASMANIANS and implemented in a way that makes an impactful difference to improving the lives of Autistic Australians and their families.

  2. Senate Select Committee on Autism

“Life outcomes for autistic Australians are unacceptably poor. This comes at an enormous personal, social and economic cost. Meaningful systemic changes would have an enormous impact… Generic disability strategies have proven ineffective at improving life outcomes for autistic people. A National Autism Strategy should form the centrepiece of efforts to improve outcomes for autistic Australians.”

– Executive Summary from the Senate Inquiry into Autism

Senate Inquiry Report Background:
In November 2019, the Australian Government announced a Senate Inquiry into the services, supports and life outcomes for autistic people. The objective was to identify ‘productive and meaningful ways to improve services and support for autistic people in the areas of education, healthcare, employment, housing, justice and rights’.

In October 2021, the Senate Select Committee reported on the services, support, and life outcomes for autistic people. The Committee is currently conducting public hearings across Australia.

Autism Tasmania is an active member of the Australian Autism Alliance and are calling for a National Autism Strategy to be established.

Our submission titled the Autism Dividend provides deep insights into the lived-experience of autistic people and offers considered and strategic options to reforms.

See full copy of the report here: Download Senate Report

  3. Tasmanian Autism Alliance

  4. National Guidelines

DSA Review


The Disability Services Act (DSA) 2011 is being reviewed and everyone is invited to share ideas on how to best legislate to promote the health and wellbeing of people with disability as well as ensuring quality services.

Autism Tasmania has prepared a submission on behalf of our community. Our top six points for this are:

  1. Statewide consistency – the DSA rules should apply regardless of which provider funds or delivers the services and supports; and regardless of whether a provider is mainstream, community-based, or disability specialised.
  2. Removing the gaps – in recognition that both the number of NDIS participants and the value of their plans will decrease; demand for local services and supports will increase. Autism is disproportionately impacted and individual advocacy is the link to ensure people do not fall through the cracks between the state and national services.
  3. Recognising an increased demand for individual advocacy – neurodiversity represents a unique individual advocacy role that relies on specific subject matter knowledge and highly tailored capacity building of both the neurodiverse and neurotypical communities. Without expertise in this area, the impact on economic and social inclusion will be reduced. It is unfair to require generic advocacy services to be experts in autism.
  4. Linking national programs with local services – requiring nationally funded programs to link fully with local services prior to deploying in Tasmania. Our community must have access to fully wrapped around services and supports that they can choose from rather than having to join the dots themselves.
  5. Aim for prevention before regulation – in regard to educating businesses in neurodiversity; staff should have access to training proactively as part of their induction, rather than reactively e.g. in response to an incident or complaint.
  6. Mandate accredited training for all front line service delivery and HR staff – people in these roles should be able to demonstrate competency in neurodiversity appropriate practice and environment inclusion.

Read the full Autism Tasmania submission here.

  5. Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability

This Royal Commission is dealing with one of the most confronting issues for people. Autism Tasmania monitors this Royal Commission and informs membership.

The Disability Royal Commission is holding a series of public hearings around the country to gather evidence about violence, neglect, abuse and exploitation of people with disability.

Access counselling and support here

Learn more here

  6. NDIS Submissions

The NDIS continues to be fine-tuned and Autism Tasmania as part of the Australian Autism Alliance is active in representing the views of the Tasmanian Autistic community.

Learn about the NDIS review here

See our submission here:


Submission Cover Page


See our submission summary here:


Submission Cover Page


  7. National Disability Strategy

Accessible Island links to the National Disability Strategy 2010 – 2020 which outlines a 10-year national policy framework for improving the lives of Australians with disability, their families and carers.

The framework has expired and a new 10- year framework will be released in 2021.

Autism Tasmania is an active member of the Australian Autism Alliance  and called for this framework to include strategies the improve the  following for the autism community:

  • inclusive and accessible communities.
  • rights, protection, justice, and legislation.
  • economic security.
  • personal and community support.
  • learning and skills; and
  • health and wellbeing.

  8. Tasmanian – Accessible Island

Accessible Island links to the National Disability Strategy and is the third state of a whole-of-government approach to ensure that all government departments implement socially just policies and practices. View the 2018-2021 DFA here.

The above site also includes includes the Action Plans for all Tasmanian Government Departments.  Each department provides and annual progress report to the Premiers Disability Advisory Council.

Autism Tasmania will help shape the new Accessible Island plan.

  9. Local Councils Accessibility action plans

Local Councils play a critical role in access and participation for the autistic community.

Autism Tasmania is active in helping local councils craft autistic friendly services and events.

A report on progress is here.




10. State Election and Budgets


11. Federal Election



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