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Bill Helping Track Missing People With Special Needs Close To Senate Floor

MGN Online

A bill helping law enforcement search for missing people with special needs has one more committee stop before heading to the Senate floor. It’s by Sen. Charlie Dean (R-Inverness).

“This bill institutes a pilot program in Baker, Columbia, Hamilton and Suwannee counties to provide a personal devices to persons with special needs to aid in search and rescue efforts. The pilot program will be voluntary and at no costs to the participants,” said Dean.

Dean refiled the measure because the bill died during this past session. It’s inspired by a young autistic boy who went missing last year. Using GPS like technology, it speeds up the time law enforcement can track not only people with disabilities, but older people prone to wandering off. Supporters say if it’s a success, it could expand to other areas of the state. Meanwhile, its House companion by Rep. Elizabeth Porter (R-Lake City) has not yet had a hearing.

For more news updates, follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter: @SaschaCordner.

Sascha Cordner has more than ten years of public radio experience. It includes working at NPR member station WUFT-FM in Gainesville for several years. She's worked in both radio and TV, serving in various capacities as a reporter, producer and anchor. She's also a graduate of the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in telecommunications. She is the recipient of 15 awards from the Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), and Edward R. Murrow. Her award-winning stories include her coverage on the infamous “Dozier School for Boys” and a feature titled "Male Breast Cancer: Lost in the Sea of Pink." Currently, Sascha serves as the host and producer of local and state news content for the afternoon news program "All Things Considered" at WFSU. Sascha primarily covers criminal justice and social services issues. When she's not reporting, Sascha likes catching up on her favorite TV shows, singing and reading. Follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter:@SaschaCordner.