Aaron Widmar
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[VIDEO] Florida Car Wash Employs, Empowers Autistic Adults

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Rising tide car wash employs autistic adults vacuum

Employee Andrew cleans cars at Rising Tide Car Wash
Photo: Nationswell

The transition from high school to the workplace is often the hardest adjustment for young adults on the autism spectrum. Moving from a structured routine that included students at their level to a business that demands high-level skills can be a struggle to overcome. A vast number of these young adults end up falling out of college and the workplace.

However, not all places have given up on finding where these young adults can thrive–for instance, Rising Tide car wash in Parkland, Florida. This automotive cleaning center employs 43 people, 35 of which are on the autism spectrum.

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In a video by NationSwell–a digital media company focusing on stories of American renewal and impact–C.O.O. of Rising Tide car wash Tom D’Eri explained why this business is different from many others. Rather than seeing the state of those with autism or other disabilities as a problem, he sees the differences as a competitive advantage.

“Typically people are really good with structured tasks, following processes, attention to detail, so we saw there are really important skills that people with autism have,” he explained. “And make them in some cases the best employees you can have.”

Rising tide car wash employs autistic adults

Adults on the autism spectrum are empowered through employment
Photo: Nationswell

The business began when Tom and his father John realized the struggle of Tom’s brother Andrew, a young man with autism who had trouble finding and keeping a job. Not only is the business empowering Andrew, it’s also addressing the unemployment rate of adults with autism that begins after age 22.

Through businesses such as this Florida car wash, community members are educated about the abilities and potential of those with autism. And thanks to the attention of NationSwell, viewers across the country have seen the impact of such work, as the video has gone viral since being uploaded.

News Source: NationSwell

  • Aaron WidmarSenior Editor

    Aaron is unashamed to be a native Clevelander and the proud driver of a 1995 Saturn SC-2 (knock on wood). He gleefully utilizes his background in theater, literature, and communication to dramatically recite his own articles to nearby youth. Mr. Widmar happily resides in Dayton, Ohio with his magnificent wife, Vicki, but is often on the road with her exploring new destinations. Aaron has high aspirations for his writing career but often gets distracted pondering the profound nature of the human condition and forgets what he was writing... See more articles by Aaron.