I thank the Deputy for giving me the opportunity to set out a response to the question in the House. The autism innovation strategy is in development, with the current focus on design, consultation and collaborative working structures. National action in respect of autism is a firm commitment in the programme for Government 2021 and I announced an intention to develop an autism innovation strategy and launch it in 2022. In budget 2022, the Minister and I secured €100,000 for the design and implementation of the autism innovation strategy and for awareness raising around it.
The autism innovation strategy will be aligned to Ireland's existing policies like the NDIS and comprehensive employment strategy. The innovation strategy will complement these structures by focusing on the specific challenges that face people with autism. We will seek to break down barriers by focusing on practical and tangible actions and outcomes. When I talk about practical and tangible actions and outcomes, I talk about them in various veins, including education, housing, employment, care settings, independent living and support so that we can have a good vision of how to support persons with autism.
As part of the strategy development process, a stakeholder-led strategic oversight and advisory group, which I will chair, will be established through an open expression of interest. The group will contribute to the development of the full draft of the strategy and will also have an ongoing role in the process of monitoring the implementation of the strategy. The full draft of the autism innovation strategy will be put to public consultation before it is adopted or implemented by Government, which will give people the opportunity to have full and open engagement.