AT&T Helps Adults with Autism Succeed in Tech Workforce

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AT&T Helps Adults with Autism Succeed in Tech Workforce

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Tuesday, May 3, 2016 - 2:15pm

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Adults with autism oftentimes have difficulty finding work. In fact, young adults with autism are significantly less likely to work for pay outside the home as compared to others with learning disabilities or speech and language impairments (58% vs. 90%), according to The Guardian. But advocates stress that with proper training, a person with autism can successfully enter the workforce and has unique strengths that lend to succeeding in certain industries. Now, a few major companies are offering their support, helping individuals with autism thrive in technology jobs.

AT&T, software consulting firm Meticulon and technology service provider MindSparks Technologies are the primary drivers behind a new initiative to train and employ people with autism in technology positions. The program, called The 5,000 Initiative, has a goal to secure 5,000 jobs for individuals with autism by 2020. To achieve this mission, the consortium partnered with LaunchAbility, a job placement agency working with adults with cognitive disabilities. Kathryn Parsons, chief executive officer of LaunchAbility, says technology jobs are a "natural fit for people with autism because this line of work requires intense focus, extreme attention to detail and the ability to do a task over and over again."

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Keywords: Diversity & Inclusion | AT&T | Cone Communications | Education | Innovation & Technology | autism | job training

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