Howard County announced a $75,000 grant for the Howard County Autism Society to support its hiring program, which creates career opportunities for skilled, job-seeking adults with autism and increases businesses’ access to potential workers.
The Autism Society Hiring Program aims to address the needs of adults with autism who have high-level, marketable skills and would benefit from building practical and social skills, confidence-building exercises, and connections for a more competitive advantage. The program will also provide training to employers on how to effectively work and communicate with individuals with autism.
Howard County’s Office of Workforce Development, which is funding the program, will also provide job readiness workshops and occupational skills training as needed.
The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected many citizens who have historically faced significant barriers to employment, including people with disabilities who have been more likely to experience lower rates of employment or under-employment and earn significantly lower wages compared to their peers without disabilities.