In the fall of 2017, I attended a conference in NYC put on by the Yang Tan Institue at Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations (ILR). The conference highlighted a number of "higher functioning Autistics" OUTPERFORMING their peers in the corporate world due to the Autistic's ability to focus, their loyalty, and their retention rates.
My sister sent this video to me, and it is reflective of the changing attitudes towards Autistics in society and the workplace. At the end of the day, we live in NYC, and this is America. Much of our individual identity is driven by the jobs and careers that we have and pursue. Why should Dustin Sweeney not have that opportunity?
This CBS Sunday Morning piece had some great stories of higher funtioning Autistics on "The growing acceptance of autism in the workplace":
Yes, these were higher functioning Autistics in the CBS story. Our son would not fit in this story, but this is a growing trend, see Cornell.
Again, Dustin Sweeney would not fit into these corporate programs as they exist today, but a number of panelist remarked how their contracts were starting to require outside contractors to have a percentage of Special Needs workers.
Dustin Sweeney could be a Professional Baker down the road, see Invictus:
Many of Dustin's friends have graduated from Hawthorne Country Day School and are now working as Coffee Grinders and Packagers at SNACK's 21+ Coffee Factory:
I am amazed at the progress that I am seeing in the employment arena for the Developmentally Disabled in the past six months.