Today On The Avenue we want to talk about the care crisis for adults with autism. Up until the age of 21, individuals with disabilities are entitled to free public education under federal law. While receiving a public education, special education programs are offered for student who need them. Programs like these often include services like speech-language therapy, service/coordination/case management, behavior management and special transportation.
Once they turn 21 years of age, they reach what is called the “services cliff” and all of these services are suddenly no longer available for the individual and their family. After grade school, there is no federal requirement to provide supportive services, which leaves over one-quarter of adults with autism without any kind of aid. The difficulty of navigating government services leaves all too many families without the help that they need.
This gap in care for adults on the autism spectrum leaves these individuals and their families in a precarious position. Studies report that approximately half of adults with autism are unemployed, which leaves them grappling with how to obtain the necessities like housing, training and social experiences.
Here On The Avenue we are trying to play our part in filling that gap, giving individuals with disabilities a place to share, learn and develop new skills. We believe that when people with and without disabilities work together to accomplish their goals, the sky is the limit. So let’s continue the conversation and find endless ways to help each other.