I have been watching this and should congratulate Coles on at least doing something even if it is for an hour where they dim the lighting, turn the music off and turn sounds down. It is great news for autistics and everyone else who have anxiety issues that could be helped by walking into a quieter store. Even though Coles is doing this at a few stores, from the last article I seen it was 68 nationwide. Not a big number, but its something to be sure. I should point out that people being people, they will think its every single store in the nation and then complain when they don’t get their way or the staff in the supermarkets look at them confused wondering what on earth is going on.
In the same context I have actually seen people online complaining that this is being done on a Tuesday while people are at work. Here is my advice for those who are complaining. Walk down to where the birthday cards are located. Choose a Sympathy card as I have none for you. Purchase it and put your name in it. I may sound harsh, but there are always ungrateful people out there. People should realise that Supermarkets can give and with the other hand take away as well. If you want the sensory hour taken away, then keep complaining. It could be thrown on a weekend on a very busy Saturday or Sunday around lunch time when the rush is. Or for kicks Christmas Eve, I bet everyone wants a sensory free Christmas Eve. To all the detractors out in the world who are just plain against any company wanting to help even in a small way. Unfortunately, people will listen to you and then you will only be happy when things are taken away. I am not going to name some higher ups for some groups that use Spectrum in their name who are not impressed. I am just the outsider who likes the small steps.
This year the Tuesday falls on Boxing Day, so get out there and go shopping. Trust me the Supermarkets will be quiet, but the other shops will be Chaos. Everyone would have usually done all their food shopping by this time. It is also inevitable that the other supermarkets and maybe shopping centres may follow suit as it is money in the pocket for them and people always know what side their bread is buttered. My tip is shop an hour before the supermarkets close as it is usually that time when it is quieter depending on where you live. Early mornings are usually just as quiet as well as soon as the store has opened unless you happen to have a 24 hour store. I think the community needs to be more supportive of initiatives like this or else it will be gone forever as a failed venture.
Hopefully I have given people something to think about and gained sales in Sympathy cards.
Coles launches quiet hour for shoppers on the autism spectrum
Coles rolls out quiet hour to help shoppers with autism