Autism – Did you know?
July monthly abilities is Abilities – Did You Know Autism. Feel free to print the PDF (Portable Document Format) version and post it somewhere that your staff can read.
Persons with Autism
- Recent studies by Canadian researchers, shows the prevalence rate of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is 1 in 94. In Ontario, there is an estimated 100,000 individuals with ASD.
- Autism is a developmental disability and is the result of a neurological disorder that affects the functioning of the brain.
- Autism affects the typical development of the brain in the areas of social interaction and communication skills.
- Children and adults with autism typically have difficulties in verbal and non-verbal communication, social interactions, and leisure or play activities.
- It can be difficult to communicate with others and relate to the outside world.
- Individuals may experience sensitivities in sight, hearing, touch, smell, and taste.
- There are different severities or categories of Autism; Autistic Disorder, Asperger’s Disorder, Pervasive development Disorder. There is no standard “type” or “typical” person with autism.
- People with autism can make effective and highly valued employees. It is important to match my particular skills to the requirements of the job.
- I have good transferable skills including attention to detail, a methodical approach, strong research skills, good long-term memory and excellent record-keeping.
- I may require extra time to complete written tests, which should be comprised of short and concise questions.
- Understand that I may have difficulty communicating sometimes.
- I am not comfortable in large public functions such as office parties and or celebrations.
- I may be very sensitive to light.
- Good support from a manager is the key to successful employment for both the employee with autism and the employer.
- Effective communication is central to this support:
What helps me in the workplace?
- Do not make assumptions
- Use direct and precise explanations
- Give detailed instructions for tasks and be clear about your expectations of me
- Use written as well as oral instructions
- Hold regular one-to-one meetings for feedback and monitoring
- Provide me with one-to-one training rather than group training.
One thing I want people to know:
“What would happen if the autism gene was eliminated from the gene pool?
You would have a bunch of people standing around in a cave, chatting and socializing and not getting anything done.`
Temple Grandin, Ph.D., Author of My Life with Autism