Gwynedd politicians have been in Porthmadog to learn more about the sensory difficulties experienced by people on the autism spectrum.

The event at Y Ganolfan, Porthmadog was aimed at autistic people, parents, and carers and provided an opportunity to meet with representatives from various services across Gwynedd offering advice and support. As part of a day, the autism bus was there for individuals to experience some or difficulties that autistic people face.

Processing everyday sensory information can be difficult for autistic people. Any of their senses may be over-or-under sensitive, or both, at different times. This can affect how the person feels and acts and has a profound impact on their daily life.

Mabon ap Gwynfor MS and Gwynedd county councillors Gwynfor Owen, Elin Walker-Jones, Meryl Roberts, and Dawn Lynne Jones attended the event, facilitated by Gwynedd Council and supported by Families First, and GIG Cymru.

It is estimated that more than one in 100 people are autistic, which means more than 700,000 people in the UK.

Following the event, Mr ap Gwynfor said: “I would like to thank Cyngor Gwynedd and partners for facilitating this informative drop-in event in Porthmadog, which provided a true sense of what life is like for those living with autism and the sensory challenges they face from day to day.

“Autism affects the way a person communicates and how they experience the world around them. Whilst some autistic people can lead relatively independent lives, others may face additional barriers.

“Autism is a hidden disability. You can’t see if someone is autistic just by looking at them. There are some behaviours and ways of communication that an autistic person may use but these aren't universal as every autistic person is different.

“This drop-in provided anyone with an interest in familiarising themselves with what living with autism is like, with the opportunity to put themselves in the shoes of an autistic person and recognise what we might take for granted can be very challenging for someone on the autistic spectrum.”

Cllr Elin Walker Jones, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People said: “I'm delighted that our Autism Team at Cyngor Gwynedd have been able to bring together all our partners at this informative event, so we can support autistic people and their families more effectively.

“It was great to see that the event was well attended. Diolch pawb!”