Toys R Us Is Offering Quiet Shopping Hour For Kids With Autism This Holiday Season
October 28, 2016
Toys R Us locations across the U.K. are hosting a quiet hour for parents of kids who have autism this holiday season.
“Making slight adjustments to stores and creating a quiet shopping period allows children and young adults to experience the fun in a toy shop, regardless of their disability,” Toys R Us marketing director Mike Coogan told The Telegraph. The changes are super simple to put into effect but make a huge difference for people with autism.
On Nov. 6 the stores will dim their lights, reduce the amount of fluorescent lighting, cut the in-store music, and eliminate the loud speaker announcements. Store employees will also put up autism-friendly signs and create quiet zones for families.
“For many autistic people and their families a simple trip to the shops, which should be an enjoyable experience, can be fraught with difficulty,” Daniel Cadey, autism access manager for the National Autistic Society, explained. “Autistic children and adults can become overwhelmed with too much information inside a busy store.”
The artificial lighting and loud announcements only make it worse. Kids with autism can easily become overwhelmed in these situations and other feels physical pain from the experience, which is definitely not how ANY child should feel around the holidays.
“Simple changes like this can make a huge difference to the 700,000 autistic people in the UK and to their families,” Cadey added. “We hope that many more major retailers will follow the great example set by Toys R Us.”