News Column

Harper Government Supports Innovative Pilot Program Assisting Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorder Obtain Employment in the IT Industry

August 4, 2014



By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Mental Health Weekly Digest -- Western Economic Diversification Canada

Today, the Honourable Michelle Rempel, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification, together with the Honourable Mike Lake, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry and Member of Parliament for Edmonton-Mill Woods-Beaumont, announced an investment of $150,000 in support of a pilot program that is providing Information Technology (IT) skills training and career opportunities for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

Federal funds supported the purchase of computing equipment and facility upgrades for the Sinneave Family Foundation and Autism Calgary's new not-for-profit organization Meticulon Consulting Incorporated. Meticulon employs and trains talented people with ASD to carry out software testing, as well as deliver quality assurance and data verification services. This unique organization serves western Canada's niche business needs in the technology, energy and related sectors by ensuring the specialized talents and skillset of Meticulon consultants are tailored to each IT contract.

Quick Facts Research shows that individuals with ASD often possess an aptitude in delivering services, this pilot program aims to create meaningful careers for participants, while also providing businesses with access to skilled IT workers.

Meticulon consultants have been involved in many aspects of promoting their services, including presentations to employers and post-secondary institutions.

Meticulon has developed a tool kit for replicating the business model in western Canada.

With four businesses and six consultants involved in the Program, Meticulon is currently six months ahead of schedule. The organization is assessing their third cohort of potential employees to further build the robust infrastructure needed for their extensive training process.

Quotes

"Our Government is proud to support Sinneave Family Foundation's Meticulon pilot program, which is creating new IT employment opportunities for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). This initiative is not only helping to improve the quality of life and level of independence for adolescents and adults with a diagnosis of ASD, but is also supporting local businesses in accessing quality IT services." Michelle Rempel, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification

"The program is innovative because it works at playing to the strengths of many of those with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Many individuals on the Spectrum are able to focus their attention in ways that most of us can't. As a result they can be very meticulous and precise in doing the kind of work that Meticulon clients hire them for." Tom Collins, President, Sinneave Family Foundation

"This funding has been vital to Meticulon's ability to launch quickly and effectively, allowing us to build the robust and adaptable IT infrastructure necessary to power our extensive assessment and training programs. Persons with Autism have unique and valuable skills that can be of benefit to Canadian businesses. Thanks to the foundational support from the federal government, our consultants are providing services that are contributing to the growth of the Canadian economy. We could not be more thankful or excited about this partnership and where it is taking us." Garth Johnson, Chief Executive Officer, Meticulon Consulting Inc (see also Autism).

Keywords for this news article include: Autism, Neurology, Technology, Developmental Disabilities.

Our reports deliver fact-based news of research and discoveries from around the world. Copyright 2014, NewsRx LLC


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Source: Mental Health Weekly Digest


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