Autism Moms Face Tough Go At Work
Mothers of children with autism frequently forgo promotions, work fewer hours and decline new job offers as a result of their caregiving responsibilities, new research indicates.
In a survey of 326 families, researchers at Washington State University Vancouver found that moms experience the brunt of workplace ramifications that come with the added responsibility of parenting a child with autism.
Half of moms said they work fewer hours and 3 out of 5 reported turning down a job offer because of their child’s unique needs. What’s more, 1 in 4 autism moms said they had taken a leave of absence or declined a promotion. As a result, 60 percent reported recently experiencing financial difficulties.
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“We found that negative effects concentrate on the mother,” said Dana Baker, lead author of the study which was published online in Social Science Journal this month.
In particular, Baker says moms are being reprimanded at work for dealing with the extra obligations of having a child with a disability — like frequent doctor’s appointments and school meetings — which she says employers can often find ways to work around.