Staff at Specsavers Sunderland have completed a course, developed with The National Autistic Society, to support customers with autism.

The initiative, which is being rolled out in Specsavers stores across the UK, aims to inform the team on the lifelong developmental disability whilst also improving the customer experience of people with autism.

Online learning

The online learning modules cover understanding autism; communicating with people with autism; how autism can impact the senses and changes that stores can make.

Andrew Garvey, store director at Specsavers Sunderland, said: ‘Autism affects more than one in 100 people1 and as our store is such a big part of the community, it is vital that we are able to communicate and support someone with the condition in the most effective way possible.

‘Members of the team have been very enthusiastic about completing the learning modules, especially Victoria who has championed the cause.

We are very proud to support The National Autistic Society and we hope this training will help make the optical experience easier for people who are living with the condition.’

First-hand experience

Victoria Chapman, optometry supervisor who undertook the training, said: ‘Before the training, I knew very little about autism so I am truly pleased that I had the opportunity to complete the course.

I now feel confident about the customer service we can offer to people instore who have autism.’

All Sunderland store information.