OPTICIANS staff in Leigh has become qualified to better understand the needs of customers with autism.

Employees at Specsavers on Bradshawgate store completed training for the Autism Friends scheme run by Wigan Council, after a visit from a woman with autism.

Her visit prompted discussion among staff as to ways they could make the customer experience better for her.

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Store director of Specsavers in Leigh Mat Averall said: "After one of our optical assistants, Jade Prescott, saw first-hand how tasks such as visiting a busy high street store can prove extremely stressful for customers with autism, everyone at the store wanted to learn more about how they could help.

"All the customer had wanted was some quiet space, so Jade took her into a side room and asked for the music to be turned off in order to create a more comfortable environment.

"Being more aware of autism is an incredibly positive development for our team and our offering to customers.

"We deal with people living with autism every day and so the training really opened all our eyes to how we can all take a little time to support and care for customers."