Celebrity Gets “Autism Friendly” Award from Autism on the Seas

April 24, 2015

It’s been revealed that Celebrity Cruises have been awarded a Silver Level “Autism Friendly” certification from Autism on the Seas, the leading organization offering advice to parents of children with autism and other developmental disabilities.

The Silver Award now clearly communicates to passengers that Celebrity Cruises provide a safe environment for children with developmental disabilities and is a good holiday option for concerned parents.

The certification stretches across Celebrity’s entire fleet, which now has dedicated youth staff onboard that are specially trained in autism awareness by Autism on the Seas.

Celebrity are even offering loan toys that passengers can let their children use in the dedicated youth play areas (ages 3-11) or can even take back to their cabin. This is to help create a family friendly atmosphere, not just in the specific child play areas, where children with special needs may feel uncomfortable, but also in the safety and privacy of your own stateroom.

The toy lending catalog is offered in partnership with Fat Brain Toys, who provide products which have both educational and entertainment value and is a highly regarded toy company among occupational, physical and play therapists.

Mike Sobbell, founder and president of Autism on the Seas is passionate about the work the organisation is doing and hopes to make more cruise lines and other holidays autism-friendly;

“We’ve been providing consultative services and guidance to the cruise lines since 2007. Now, through the efforts capped by cruise lines’ adoption of our Autism Friendly standards and certification, which also includes a customized training program for their ship staff, we view this as a great achievement and service to the special needs community and the entire cruise industry. Celebrity Cruises has been exemplary in its efforts. We are honored to bring Celebrity into our family of “Autism Friendly” cruise lines and look forward to continuing to work together to further accommodate special needs families seeking a vacation designed for their wide range of unique needs.

“Our Autism Friendly certification is extremely important to us, as we want all our guests to have an amazing experience and enjoy their modern luxury cruise,” said Becky Thomson-Foley, Director of Entertainment, Celebrity Cruises. “Our history of collaborating with Autism on the Seas has led to this new designation, and we look forward to continue working with them.”

Celebrity’s Silver Level status represents that staff are present who are trained on how to communicate with and interact with children and people with developmental disabilities.

Do you have a child with a developmental disability yourself, or know someone who does? Do organisations like Autism on the Seas make you feel more comfortable booking a cruise?