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Shopping Centre Adapted For Autistic Shoppers With Silent Hours

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Shopping Centre Adapted For Autistic Shoppers With Silent Hours

A shopping centre has been kitted out to provide a safe environment for autistic visitors.

Customers who have autism can benefit from silent spaces throughout the mall, soft lights and no music to ensure a calm atmosphere.

The Galeria Katowicka mall, in the south of Poland, has introduced the 'Silent Hours' between 9 and 11am on Saturday mornings to help those with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

The shopping centre now has dedicated 'Silent Rooms'. Credit: CEN
The shopping centre now has dedicated 'Silent Rooms'. Credit: CEN
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Shopping centre director Joanna Baginska told said: "We are doing everything we can to make Galeria Katowicka's space as comfortable and safe as possible for people on the Autism spectrum.

"We truly believe that Galeria Katowicka will be an inspiration for other shopping malls.

"We have received positive feedback from organisations working with people on the autistic spectrum, as well as from clients who say this is an excellent idea."

Almost 60 shops out of 250 have also agreed to soften the lighting and turn down the music in their stores - they have been given a special sticker to advertise that they are 'autism friendly'.

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People with autism can experience difficulty with things like social interaction and communication. There is no cure for autism - it's a lifelong condition, and there is also no solid evidence of what causes it.

Galeria Katowicka has introduced weekly 'Silent Hours'. Credit: CEN
Galeria Katowicka has introduced weekly 'Silent Hours'. Credit: CEN

However, autism does not stop people from living full lives. An Aussie teenager with autism recently hit the headlines for setting up his own successful business after he struggled to find a job.

Just over a year ago, Clay Lewis was finding it almost impossible to find an after school job, so he set up his own bin washing firm in the local area.

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His mum, Laura Lewis said: "Because he speaks differently than other people, employers have unfair assumptions based on first impressions.

"If Clay had a job interview today, I can guarantee you he won't get a job. They don't know he has a great work ethic, he is very loyal and very diligent.

"If people are given chances, their self confidence will improve."

The young entrepreneur is already using his new found fortune to give back to the local community, has offered to clean bins for charities for free and has hired three other people to help out with the workload.

Featured Image Credit: CEN

Topics: News, Autism

Amelia Ward
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