Letter: LATAN saves money ­— and lives

Gov. Bobby Jindal’s failure to approve funding for the Louisiana Assistive Technology Access Network (LATAN) fails all of us in Louisiana.

I have never met a group of professionals working harder to introduce people who have disabilities to technology that allows them to work, return to work and live more fully. It is amazing that technology, often costing $500 or less, makes it possible for someone to get a job or keep a job, rather than rely on more-expensive public funding to stay at home.

Without LATAN and its knowledgeable specialists, people with disabilities are likely to remain unaware of technology that allows them to read, eat, move around or drive a vehicle. Sadly, physicians rarely recommend these technologies because they too are unaware of their existence. It falls to LATAN to showcase technology that helps people once again be part of the world around them.

I urge the governor to restore the $250,000 that will be repaid tenfold when more people are capable of working.

Funding LATAN is a sound investment in Louisiana and its residents.

Barbara Burton, member

LATAN Advisory Council

Baton Rouge