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Aeolienne

How do you solve the trickiest problems in the workplace? Employ more autistic people

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Aeolienne

How do you solve the trickiest problems in the workplace? Employ more autistic people

Neurodiversity can be a huge advantage for companies, yet people on the spectrum have often been marginalised. Now some firms are specifically seeking them out. Is this a crucial turning point?

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Nesf

Yes, there has been an increase in companies employing seeing the value of autistic people and employing them, and that is a very good thing. The only criticism I would have is that most of these jobs are in the IT sector - nat all autistics are IT experts - we are linguists, musicians, wildlife experts, engineurs, etc, and there needs to be more jobs given across the board.

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Gone home
22 minutes ago, Nesf said:

Yes, there has been an increase in companies employing seeing the value of autistic people and employing them, and that is a very good thing. The only criticism I would have is that most of these jobs are in the IT sector - nat all autistics are IT experts - we are linguists, musicians, wildlife experts, engineurs, etc, and there needs to be more jobs given across the board.

I believe its an unusually stringent and lengthy selection process with only the creme in a niche IT market selected.
Your average autistic  is not likely to succeed and generally speaking will be discriminated against for social reasons

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Sanctuary

Thanks for highlighting the article Aeolienne. Clearly there are some positive developments but overall a huge amount needs to be done. Too many employers "talk the talk" and too few "walk the walk" when it comes to employing more people on the autistic spectrum - or indeed addressing other diversity issues. Some employers are insincere and even prejudiced but will say the right things in public. Others are more genuine but still see employing more workers on the spectrum and treating them with proper consideration as a low priority. Some are much more committed but get "cold feet" when it comes to making actual employment decisions. A few are fully committed and really do make a difference. Often - as in the company highlighted in the article - their aspirations will have been shaped by personal connections to autism. In too few cases are there employers without that connection who are still prepared to take real action. Sometimes - as mentioned in the article - other workers and colleagues are part of the problem and can make life very difficult for workers on the spectrum and this can be a reason (not a justification) for employers not taking appropriate action.

I feel real improvement in employment opportunities is only likely to happen when there are targets for employing workers on the spectrum and proper enforcement when these are not met, or appropriate adjustments are not made in the workplace. All too often employers think that statements in policies or on websites that they are "autism-friendly" or words to that effect are enough. Or they may feel that offering a token interview to someone with AS shows that are autism-friendly. Real action involves actually employing people, in good conditions and on good contracts. It does have to be said though that a major issue is that so many people with AS are undiagnosed or their diagnosis is not declared (perhaps due to fear of stereotyping and discrimination) and so assessing their progress - or lack of it - in the workplace is difficult. However when employers are aware that an applicant / employee is on the spectrum they need to give them proper opportunities and consideration.

Finally I agree with Nesf that the article can help to reinforce the view that people with AS are all IT experts or adept with other technical and numerical enterprises. Clearly some of them are but there are many on the spectrum are skilled in other areas and can be very good employees in many other jobs.

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Laurie

I work in the healthcare industry. I think it's important to realize that everyone was different (even people with Aspergers) and have different strengths. But I think strengths of people with Aspergers are generally effective for every industry. In my area, I've been seeing more and more people hire people with intellectual disabilities so hopefully we're moving in the right direction with hiring neurodiverse people.

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Gone home
On 27/10/2017 at 12:17 AM, Laurie said:

I've been seeing more and more people hire people with intellectual disabilities so hopefully we're moving in the right direction with hiring neurodiverse people.

Hope so.
Just need to get round the problem of companies not liking honest observations from aspergic employees and constructing their exit from employment :huh:

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