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Gov. Kasich Signs Executive Order To Support Ohioans With Disabilities

Ohio Gov. John Kasich
Gage Skidmore

Gov. John Kasich signed an executive order on Friday that will emphasize the use of technology to assist Ohioans with disabilities when the state evaluates their needs. 

Kasich says his order means more Ohioans can get this technology through the state’s Department of Developmental Disabilities. It establishes a Technology First Initiative and 10-person council that represents various members of the disability advocate community, which will recommend best practices and state policy around "supportive technology."

There’s a lot of technology on the market these days that can help people with disabilities: Little robots help teach kids with autism to read social cues; call buttons, monitors and speakers can turn on lights and alert caregivers.

And smart wheelchairs with safety sensors can keep people such as Columbus resident Patti Ruble safe.

“This has given me freedom, independence,” Ruble said. “I can keep on doing my thing with my life.”

Kasich says it will make life easier for Ohioans with disabilities and their caregivers.

Jo Ingles is a professional journalist who covers politics and Ohio government for the Ohio Public Radio and Television for the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau. She reports on issues of importance to Ohioans including education, legislation, politics, and life and death issues such as capital punishment.