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Ask Ellie update: Week 1 Update

Letitia Bright Asked Ellie about autism

Hi ellie my question is why is the help available for autistic children diagnosis first? So many families are left with little or no help while awaiting the ASD assessment. The assessment waiting lists are so long and meanwhile parents and children are left to suffer.

I also have another question why has the criteria for Educational health care plans gone up? Many children with special needs are not getting the help they desperately need and are not reaching their full potential. Surely there must be a way for parents and children to get the help they deserve without the constant fight and battles with health professionals and schools. We already have so much to deal with.

– Question via Facebook

Hi Letitia

Just to let you know I have been in touch with The National Autistic Society They tell me they have been inundated with questions like yours and have started a campaign to get earlier diagnosis.

They tell me they are finding the right person to answer your question and will be in touch asap.

I am also speaking to people locally.

Will let you know when I have more. Ellie

To get in touch with Ask Ellie:

Email: Twitter: @elliebarkeritv Facebook: itvaskellie


Bristol bid to get fleet of buses powered by poo

One of the Wessex buses which runs entirely on human waste Credit: ITV News

A fleet of "number two" buses - powered entirely by poo - could be picking up passengers in Bristol next year.

Wessex Bus is hoping to run a 20-strong fleet in Bristol while rival operator First West of England is looking to bring 110 poo-powered double deckers to the city.

The UK's first ever bio-bus, powered by methane gas extracted from human waste, began services in the city last year on the appropriately named No 2 route.

The route currently runs from Cribbs Causeway to Stockwood.

Staff go on strike after Open University confirms closure of Bristol branch

Staff from the Open University on the picket line in Bristol this morning Credit: ITV News

Staff at the Open University in Bristol are on strike today following a decision to close the regional centre in the city.

Members of the University and College Union are staging a one-day walk-out.

Peter Horrocks, vice-chancellor of the Open University, said: "This is an important decision for the university and its students as it means we can now introduce much-needed improvements to our student support services, something which simply isn't possible across dispersed, smaller offices."

Pauline Collins, of the UCU, said: "It is deeply disappointing that the university has chosen to push ahead with these widely criticised plans. The closures are opposed by staff, students, former students and politicians."

Around 500 members of staff across the university will be offered redundancies, or the chance to relocate or early retirement.


Seen any elves lately?

Elves are taking over Bedminster in Bristol Credit: ITV News

Part of Bristol is getting shoppers in the Christmas spirit with its very own elf trail.

If you head to Bedminster, you might find yourself bumping into some elves. The community is taking it all very seriously - local schools have provided some of the little helpers and there's even an 'Elf and Safety' office.

The idea is children look for some of a hundred elves and claim rewards at candy check-in points if they spot them.

Obviously I think the kids will really jump on board and I hope their parents too. Anyone strolling through the area can just have it as an extra fun thing to do, you know - spot some elves.

– Russell Henry, Project Manager
Setting up the checkpoints ready for the elf hunt Credit: ITV News

Man and dog rescued from river

Fire crews have rescued a man and a dog from the River Brew in Somerset. They were called to Porters Hatch in Meare near Glastonbury at 6.45 pm last night, 24 November.

The firefighters wore dry suits and used triple extension ladders, lines and water rescue equipment to save the man and his pet.

Police and ambulance crews were also called to the scene.

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