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Arizona Social Security Disability Blog

Monday, January 14, 2019

Why are employers hiring workers with autism?

Qualifying for Social Security disability benefits means satisfying the federal government’s definition of “disabled” --which means suffering from a physical or mental impairment that prevents engaging in substantial gainful activities and that has lasted or is expected to last for 12 months or more or result in death.

The government actually maintains a list of a variety of health problems that qualify as physically or mentally disabling conditions-- but the list is not exclusive. 

One of the fastest growing disabling conditions of our time is autism spectrum disorder, with statistics of its rise in prevalence increasing an alarming pace. Autism is a complex developmental disability with symptoms that “typically appear in early childhood and inhibit communication and interaction to varying degrees.”

Not long ago, the future for those with autism – – particularly regarding employment prospects and independent living – – was at best bleak and at worst nonexistent. Despite school programs that support autistic individuals improving greatly over the past two decades, there aren’t many programs or options after autistic teens age out of their school programs. This has traditionally left autistic people home on their parents’ couches without a purpose or socialization opportunities.

Fortunately, employers are learning that autistic individuals, differ from non-autistic workers in a good way. They often thrive on repetitive tasks that non-autistic peers would likely not be interested in—yet are necessary and valuable to employers. Autistic people are also often detail-oriented, focused, reliable and loyal employees.

With an estimated half-million teens with autism reaching adulthood over the next decade, workplace inclusion is becoming a priority for autistic young adults, their parents (who hope they can lead and independent and fulfilling life), and open-minded business owners who realize the value of these workers as well as tax and other incentives that come with hiring the disabled. With the support of a job coach and proper training, workers with autism can thrive on the job despite a disability. 

If you or a loved one is suffering from a disability and would like information about applying for disability benefits or appealing the denial disability benefits, or would like to know what impact a job may have on disability benefits, the disability attorneys of Arizona at Roeschke Law can help you. Contact us today for a free consultation. 

With offices in Phoenix, Tempe, and Tucson, we help disabled people and their families throughout Arizona in all aspects of disability benefits law.


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