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Sunday, January 29, 2017

Fournier Talks to Calley

In The Politics of Autism, I discuss the employment of adults with autism and other developmental disabilities. Many posts have discussed programs to provide them with training and experience.

At Crain's Detroit Business, autism dad Ron Fournier talks to another autism dad, Brian Calley, the lieutenant governor of Michigan:
You have an opportunity here to talk to the influential folks who read Crain's publications. What would you say to a businessperson to convince them that hiring people with different brain wiring isn't just a nice thing to do, but there's actually a return on investment?
I am very careful to reject the notion that this is … charity, because that is not at all what I'm talking about. This is an effort to treat people who have a neurological difference the same way we would anyone else. You hire people that are well-suited for the job.
Ford's recent experience with … a pilot (program) is now being expanded, because they had difficulty in certain high-tech positions — in finding the right people to fill those jobs and there are people with autism filling those jobs today. There are examples across the different forms of employment, from the type of jobs that are entry-level all the way through to complicated jobs. People are excelling (at their jobs) because they have mostly been given a chance to prove what they were able to do.