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Interacting with Autistic Persons

Could you communicate effectively with an autistic coworker? Autism is a neurological variation in how brain connectivity works for about 1%-2% of the population. Autistic persons think, interact, and sense their environment differently. Brain activity is more intense and dynamic, and not as orderly. These differences are visible in social interactions, so be patient in your communication. Autistic persons may ask more questions, restate what you said, or talk more to ensure understanding. Be prepared for unfiltered or literal responses so you do not misinterpret something said as being intentionally rude. Also, anticipate less eye contact, which can be distracting and make it more difficult for an autistic person to process information. Remember to treat all employees with the dignity and respect they deserve.



Tracy Bussey | 10/21/2016

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