Edinburgh Airport has become the first airport in Scotland to achieve an Autism Friendly Award in recognition of the accessible and supportive environment created for autistic passengers.
The award recognises the assistance measures put in place at the airport to improve the experience for people on the autism spectrum as well as their families or carers.
The busy nature of an airport can sometimes make the experience for passengers challenging and a number of measures have been introduced at Edinburgh Airport to help mitigate that. These include:
• additional training for staff to help passengers with additional needs
• an Edinburgh Airport specific Social Story to help children prepare for the journey
• a pre-visit to the airport to familiarise with the sights and sounds of the airport environment
• discreet lanyard and pin badges to identify those with hidden disabilities so staff are aware of the need for additional support
• providing children’s books to children who haven’t travelled before, or who need something extra to help them prepare
Chief Executive of Edinburgh Airport, Gordon Dewar said:
“Airports can be extremely busy places and that can be quite daunting for people with additional needs, especially if they rely on a routine which a place like an airport can upset.
“We’ve looked at that and considered where we could make simple but effective changes to make the journey through Edinburgh Airport as easy as possible for those with autism and other additional needs.
“Our staff and partners have worked together to provide this service and this award is a clear indication of our commitment to make Edinburgh as accessible as possible for the 13 million passengers who use the airport every year.”