May 25, 2016 – DEARBORN, MICHIGAN
Raj Nair, Executive V.P. & Chief Technical Officer Product Development Announces that Ford is collaborating with the Autism Alliance of Michigan on a pilot program that will provide individuals who have autism with an opportunity to gain work experience in Ford’s Product Development organization beginning June 1, 2016.
Autism is a term used for a group of developmental disorders which includes a wide range of symptoms, skills, and levels of disability. Individuals with autism often have characteristics which include difficulty communicating and interacting with others, repetitive behaviors, as well as very focused interests or activities. Research suggests that 90 percent of individuals with autism are unemployed and 50 percent of them are highly functioning.
The roles that will be performed during Ford’s pilot program support our PD Vehicle Evaluation and Verification efforts. We will evaluate the pilot for potential continuation and expansion of the program on a more permanent basis both in other areas of PD and other areas of the Company. This is a win-win program: the participant gets substantial work experience and an opportunity for future employment at the Company, and we get essential work done to support our PD efforts.
This is a cause that is personally important to my family and affects many other families in our community. Please join me in supporting this initiative and help bring awareness to this program as we work to make Ford a great place to work for everyone.
Employees interested in learning more about autism and resources available for families touched by autism may consider the resources available at non-profit organizations such as the Autism Alliance of Michigan: https://autismallianceofmichigan.org/.