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Promoting workplace inclusivity: Improving the accommodations process for Autistic employees

Canada is committed to creating a barrier-free country by 2040 through the Accessible Canada Act. However, workplace accommodations are currently not offered across workplaces in Canada ubiquitously. Among workplaces that do offer accommodations, more emphasis is usually placed on accessibility for people with physical disabilities, with little or no attention to invisible disabilities such as autism.

In order to provide employers with guidance on effectively delivering accommodations to employees, this knowledge-to-practice gap must be filled by acknowledging and accommodating the holistic needs of Autistic workers.

Autism Alliance of Canada developed a white paper report to recommend that the federal government utilize the Inclusive Workplaces Discussion Tool within all federally regulated workplaces by December 31, 2023. The tool provides language and approaches that are rights-based, a helpful feature for employers who may not feel equipped to use the most appropriate language or provide advice on accommodations for a range of disabilities.