Coles Quiet Hour Rolls Out to 68 stores Nationwide Creating an autism-friendly Australia

In August, Coles partnered with Autism Spectrum Australia (Aspect) to trial Quiet Hour at two Victorian stores (Ringwood and Balwyn East) to support customers who are, or have family members, on the autism spectrum.

Following the success of the trial, Quiet Hour will now be offered at 68 stores across Australia, every Tuesday between 10:30-11:30am.

Together we can create a world where no-one on the autism spectrum is left behind. Please support Autism Spectrum Australia today.

A new sensory-friendly shopping experience

During Quiet Hour, Coles' stores:

  • Reduce Coles Radio to lowest volume
  • Dim the lights by 50%
  • Turn down register and scanner volumes to lowest level
  • Remove roll cages from shop floor
  • Avoid trolley collections
  • Avoid PA announcements *excluding emergencies
  • Offer free fruit at customer service
  • Have trained team members available to assist customers

"The modifications to the shopping experience haven’t just been about creating low physical and sensory stimulators. Together with Coles, we’re achieving a ‘no-judgement’ shopping space where people on the spectrum and their families can feel comfortable and welcome whilst grocery shopping.” - Linzi Coyle, Aspect Community Engagement and Operations. “We have invested in training for team members to increase their understanding of sensory overload and how to best respond to customer needs"

Quiet Hour is not limited to people on the spectrum and anyone who may benefit from the experience is encouraged to come along.

To prepare for the shopping experience, customers can download the free Coles app, which allows users to create shopping lists and use the product finder function to help locate products in store - download the app here.

How Aspect is creating an autism-friendly Australia...

The Coles Quiet Hour initiative is part of an ongoing program by Aspect and a number of partners to foster an autism-friendly Australia.

Aspect is proudly working with organisations across Australia to help introduce a range of specialist training, support and online resources for the whole community, as well as provide employment opportunities for people on the spectrum:

For more information on creating an autism-friendly Australia, visit: https://www.autismspectrum.org.au/AutismFriendlyAustralia

Our work with Surf Life Saving Clubs

After a successful pilot program in Northern NSW, we are working with 14 Surf Life Saving clubs across NSW and QLD, to help them create an inclusive Nippers program and beach environment.

With the development of specialised training and resources, the Inclusive Beaches project is supporting Surf Life Saving Clubs to create inclusive opportunities for children with disabilities, so that every child can learn to be safe at the beach.

Visit www.inclusion.net.au to find out more about the Inclusive Beaches project. If you or your club would like to be involved in the project, get in touch: beaches@autismspectrum.org.au

Our work with Taronga Zoo

Taronga Zoo has teamed up with Autism Spectrum Australia to start the Access Taronga initiative, which aims to provide a range of supports and services for guests on the spectrum.

“On our Access Taronga days, guests on the autism spectrum with their family or friends can enjoy early entry to Taronga Zoo Sydney. This is a great opportunity to enjoy the peace and quiet of the Zoo before it opens to the general public.” said Stephen Williams, Manager - Guest Experience Operations at Taronga Zoo

If you would like to contribute to this and other great autism-friendly initiatives, you can make a tax deductible donation to Aspect today. Your donation can make a difference to the lives of children, adolescents and adults on the autism spectrum and their families:

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