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A project in Scotland to create up to 50 IT jobs for people with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) has been awarded £700,000 in grant and loans.

The Scottish government cash will help the Specialisterne project, set up by Community Enterprise in Scotland (CEiS), to recruit and train staff.

The Glasgow project is based on a Danish model which employs people with ASD as software testers.

Only 13% of adults with ASD in Scotland are thought to be in full-time work.

Specialisterne Scotland, which was set up with the help of The National Autistic Society Scotland and the Autism Resource Centre, will spend the next six months recruiting the first 12 potential trainees.

They will undergo a four-month training programme using Lego Mindstorm sets and robotics to identify and match their skills to work tasks.

To ensure the trainees achieve their full potential, Specialisterne aims to create a highly-planned and predictable working environment to minimise stress.

CEiS chief executive Gerry Higgins said: “We know from the experience in Denmark that Specialisterne Scotland has the potential to change lives for the better by providing mainstream employment at the market rate for people with autism, while transforming recruitment attitudes and business practices.

“The company will commence commercial testing in early 2011 following recruitment and training of the workforce.

Read in Full:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-10857029



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