by Andrew R. McIlvaine
Originally published: January 17, 2016
Tim Weiler's oldest son graduated magna cum laude from Marshall University. Yet, when it came to finding a job, he "hit a wall," Weiler says.
Weiler's son has autism spectrum disorder, and his struggle with launching a career is similar to that of most people with ASD: Only 58 percent of young adults with autism are employed, according to a 2015 report from the A.J. Drexel Autism Institute, a rate that is far lower than that for young adults with other disabilities. The United Nations estimates that the global unemployment and underemployment rate for people with autism is as high as 90 percent. Autism affects approximately one in every 68 children in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
People on the autism spectrum (the name for a wide range of developmental disorders that affect a person's ability to communicate and interact with others) have long faced an uphill battle in landing decent jobs.