Literally I was just yesterday talking about this with my therapist, except it was in the context of autistic allies trying to shift the focus on autism as only about high-support-needs people to a focus on autistics as a nascent economic boon for business hiring. What about, I asked, those of us who simply appear not to be consistently employable at all? Are we then simply to be deemed worthless, and because of our very failure to be of economic use also deemed to be unworthy of financial supports?
Even worse, because our culture insists that being unable to hold down a job indicates a deeper character flaw, many autistic people develop self-loathing as a result of their experiences. I know autistic men and women who are brilliant and hard-working but constantly refer to themselves as “bums” or “losers” because society has told them that, well, their inability to hold down a job proves that those things are true about them. If they dare trying to dispel those misconceptions with the facts about their situation, they’re accused of coming up with excuses.
It’s not just, as it says here, that “we are only going to make life easier for autistic individuals in the workplace when we create a more compassionate, tolerant and inclusive atmosphere for everyone in the workplace”. It’s that we are only going to make life easier for everyone when we don’t precondition a baseline of housing, food, and healthcare on being either consistently employable or severely and obviously disabled.