Asda Have Just Done Something Incredible For Autistic And Disabled Shoppers

by : UNILAD on : 24 Apr 2016 12:28
Asda job cutsAsda job cutsPA

An Asda superstore manager has thought of a very clever way to help out its autistic and disabled shoppers.

Simon Lea, the manager of the Cheetham Hill branch, in Manchester, will be introducing a ‘quiet hour’.

This means they will stop its escalators and turn off all in-store music and displays TV’s to make it a more comfortable environment for people with autism, Manchester Evening News reports.


All disabled and autistic customers will also be given a map of the store – which includes more pictures than words – to make it easier to move around the shop.

Simon is hoping that these changes will mean ‘you’ll be able to hear a pin drop’, when the first quiet hour begins at 8am on May 7th.

Speaking to the M.E.N, Simon explained why he decided to introduce this new measure: 


This boy was playing absolute blue murder, kicking and screaming. His mum just looked drained. She told me he suffers from autism. He was having a meltdown.

Leading UK Supermarkets Compete For Their Share Of The Market In The Run Up To ChristmasLeading UK Supermarkets Compete For Their Share Of The Market In The Run Up To ChristmasGetty

So, to calm him down, Simon gave the boy a 50p voucher and a £1 football.

He continued: 


This lad looked at me and he started playing with the football. His mum was the happiest I have ever seen anyone and just for giving him a football.

After consulting with colleagues and disabled customers, Simon decided to implement this ‘quiet hour’ and it seems this incident has also changed his perspective on life.

He added:


It’s all about helping people really. Six months ago I would have said ‘control your child’ even though I’ve got children. But speaking to people with autism and disabled people has helped me think about how I can make it a better place to shop. I suffered for many years with anxiety. I used to absolutely hate going into busy stores. There are a lot of people out there who have mental health issues. There are many people who don’t talk about it. We have a lot of disabled customers and we want to make the shop better for them.

And the response to this move has been overwhelming:


An absolutely amazing idea, fair play to him!

Topics: Life


Manchester Evening News
  1. Manchester Evening News

    Asda boss introduces 'quiet hour' to help autistic and disabled shoppers