The U.S. Justice Department will now cover the cost of GPS tracking devices for children with severe autism and other similar conditions, New York Senator Charles Schumer announced Wednesday.
Schumer said the voluntary-use GPS tracking devices, which cost about $85 each plus small monthly fees, will be like those used to track people suffering from Alzheimer’s for which the DOJ already provides grants, The New York Times reports.
The push for the government to cover the cost of GPS tracking for autistic children comes in response to the death of Avonte Oquendo, a severely autistic, non-verbal 14-year-old who disappeared from his Queens, New York school on October 4 last year. His remains were later found in the East River, but the cause of his death remains unknown.
Schumer said he will continue to press for legislation to secure long-term federal funding for the devices.