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Article on autistic brothers running a comic shop

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Sanctuary

I came across this article on the BBC website about two brothers who run a comic shop. They were struggling to find suitable work but their mother was able to buy a small shop premises in which they have successfully built a business around their interest:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/stories-46236942

The article is also useful in showing how the brothers have worked around (with their mother's assistance) some of the difficulties they have, e.g. with numeracy. I'm sure many people on the autistic spectrum would ideally like to work around a specialised interest, either as self-employed or working for someone else (although running one's own business can allow autistic workers more opportunity to shape the work in the ways that suit them). It's an encouraging article, as was the TV item I highlighted recently about a family who set up a small factory making chocolates to provide work for their autistic son and others on the spectrum. What is most needed though are much better efforts by employers more generally to employ and properly support autistic workers. Often when we come across cases of genuine inclusion and support they are by employers with personal connections to autism. Employers who don't have these personal connections need to be doing much more to employ autistic workers - often they are good at "talking the talk" on this but much less effective at "walking the walk" and actually doing it in reality.

 

 

 

 

 

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Joie6

I've just read this story. What these two brothers and their mother have done is inspiring 😄.

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StarlessEclipse

As with similar stories I've read recently, I'm happy for the individuals involved. It's great that they have the security of stable employment, but it must be emphasised that they lucked out by being born into a rich family. If you're from a low-income family and ASD makes conventional employment impossible, you're fucked.

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Sanctuary
16 hours ago, StarlessEclipse said:

As with similar stories I've read recently, I'm happy for the individuals involved. It's great that they have the security of stable employment, but it must be emphasised that they lucked out by being born into a rich family. If you're from a low-income family and ASD makes conventional employment impossible, you're fucked.

That's a very good point StarlessEclipse. These stories help to show that people with ASD can be successful and productive and can offer different skills and insights compared to the neurotypical population. However these opportunities too often depend on the good fortune of having parents with the money and / or time to support them. In some cases success is also dependent on having parents, other family members or friends who are very well-informed and have good connections to steer someone with ASD in the right direction. Most autistic individuals are not so fortunate - their families may not have the money, time, knowledge or connections to support them and sadly in some cases families may even be unhelpful or even hostile. This is why we need a much greater shift of social attitudes and social support - and in particular changes from employers - so all individuals on the spectrum can achieve their potential.

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