Autism Awareness Month

1 out of every 10 adults on the autism spectrum are employed, leaving 9 out of 10 persons unemployed. Employers are always looking for the best and the brightest to hire for their companies, many times overlooking highly qualified and skilled workers due to misconceptions or lack of knowledge about autism and the advantages of hiring a person with autism.

Individuals with autism share the following traits with the best and brightest employees: They are skilled in various areas, honest, loyal, and detailed oriented. As with other persons with disabilities, individuals with autism will tend to be very punctual and have great time and attendance records. They are also very logical, will not be afraid to ask questions, and are more concerned with completing their assignment, rather than gathering at the water fountain to discuss their weekend.

Individuals with autism are also very visual persons. Utilizing this trait can propel their ability to aid in strategic planning and visioning within your organization. They are very direct in their communications and interactions. They are independent thinkers and will not be swayed by the underlying workplace culture. They are non-judgmental and can see both sides of an idea or theory.

Hiring a person with autism may present some challenges but with accommodations, not unlike those given others, they may excel and find long term and meaningful employment. Don't dread or fear the word accommodations; many have no cost.

Recommended Accommodations

With the proper guidance, understanding, and training of employees, all work places can be conducive for adults with autism spectrum disorders to become valuable employees.

Need assistance or want to know more? Several agencies in the area are available to provide that assistance. A few are:

Denise Barnes MA
Center for Autism and Related Disabilities
CARD Consultant
[email protected]
card-usf.fmhi.usf.edu

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