Dozens of Canada’s top employers are coming together virtually for the annual Spectrum Works job fair, a national initiative that seeks to find meaningful work for people with autism.
According to the Canadian Survey on Disability 2017, 77% of Canadian autistic adults are unemployed. Since its first event in 2017, more than 1,500 participants with autism have participated in the job fair.
This year’s event brings together recruiters and hiring managers from major companies including TD, Rogers, Compugen, Salesforce, Auticon, IBM and more. Participants can sign up for interviews for various open positions and as well as have access to job skill workshops, resume and employment consulting and community service provider consultations.
“Hosting a virtual event allows us to reach more communities across the country. It also means we can mitigate in-person crowds and situations that may be stressful for folks who experience social anxiety or sensory overload,” says Neil Forester, co-owner of Substance Cares, the Toronto-based charitable foundation that organizes the annual job fair.
Spectrum Works is the brainchild of Forester and his partner Xavier Pinto, whose eleven-year-old son Xavi is autistic. “Our mission for Spectrum Works will always remain same as we continue to promote our attendees’ talents and some unique skill sets to some of Canada’s top employers. We want to make sure everyone like my Xavi, can choose the opportunities they want to pursue,” shared Pinto.