Free Our People Now

We advocate for urgent change for Autistic people and people with learning difficulties

About this project

Easy Read

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About ‘Free Our People Now’ (PDF document)

About ‘Free Our People Now’ (Word document)

Why is the project needed (PDF document)

Why is the project needed? (Word document)

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The Free Our People Now project aims to help autistic people and people with learning difficulties, with lived experience of the psychiatric system, to have a voice and advocate for urgent change so Autistic people and people with learning difficulties can live in their own homes rather than in hospitals.

“It is no longer acceptable for Disabled people to be detained by the State on the grounds of disability and risk to oneself and others.   The Mental Health Bill proposals must focus on investing and promoting Disabled people’s emotional wellbeing rather than waiting until there is education, health, social care and housing system failure that leads to life-long hospitalization.”

Simone Aspis (Project Manager)

If you are a Disabled person or are involved in a Disabled people’s group (including speaking up groups) and are interested in the project, please feel to contact me on:


Videos from our volunteers

This video is a chat between our volunteer Lucy, project manager Simone and communications officer Rensa. The chat is about what it was like for Lucy to live in an institution, and why things need to change.

To see the video with subtitles, you can click play and then click the “CC button”.

Or you can read the video transcript by viewing the video on YouTube, looking for the “…” button underneath the video, and clicking “Show transcript”.



Blog posts

Lucy and Sanneke are volunteers with Free Our People Now. They tell other people what it is like to live in an institution.

Disabled people calling for an end to secure hospitals

Lucy’s story

Sanneke’s story


“Lives Are Being Stolen By An Outdated Mental Health Act – I Would Know.” – by a supporter of Free Our People Now

Our work on the Mental Health Bill


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What Inclusion London has to say about the Draft Mental Health Bill

Our ideas for making the Mental Health Bill better



About 20 people are sat around a table in parliament. Simone speaks via video call. A screenshot from the recording of the Draft Mental Health Bill evidence session.





We gave oral (spoken) evidence to the Joint Committee on the Draft Mental Health Bill.

Watch the video recording here. We start introducing our project at 15:38:51. Or you can read the transcript of the oral evidence (PDF).


We also submitted written evidence.


The committee wrote a report, after the evidence was given. Read the Report of Session 2022–23 in Large Print (PDF).


For more resources and information, please follow the links below:

News from Free Our People Now