In Canada, approximately 1% of the population has Autism Spectrum Disorder. This lifelong condition, or neurodiversity, can have significant impacts on social interactions and behaviors, with many exhibiting a range of behaviours those in the workplace view as “odd” or disruptive.
This can pose a challenge to employers and create the context for significant social isolation from “typical” co-workers. Despite this, many individuals with ASD have skills or characteristics that are both valued and beneficial to employers (e.g., Schall et al., 2012), and the diversity of skill sets exhibited across the spectrum provides opportunities for a wide range of individuals to be meaningfully engaged.
Cost-effective, evidence-based approaches must be identified and successfully implemented to improve assessment, career counselling, training, on-the-job supports, and workplace accommodations. Currently, there is a dearth of support specifically focused on those with ASD. The supported employment sector is primarily dedicated to working with those having intellectual disabilities, and the agencies that are contracted to provide head-hunting/recruitment services are unable to provide the level of ongoing support needed to ensure employment success for those with ASD.
Level IT Up is here to fill that gap!