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Paralyzed lawyer receives voice recognition device from Taipei mayor

2012/07/06 22:57:08

Taipei, July 6 (CNA) A 29-year-old lawyer suffering from spinal muscular atrophy on Friday received a speech recognition software from Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin as a gift to assist his studies at Harvard Law School.

Chen Chun-han, who was paralyzed from the neck down and relies on a wheelchair for mobility, is scheduled to leave for the United States on July 12 for a doctoral program at Harvard.

Hau said the device, which translates the spoken word into text, could help Chen's studies.

Chen has suffered from the rare disease since he was a child. Yet he managed to enter National Taiwan University's College of Law with top scores and became a licensed lawyer in 2006.

Now, he is headed to Harvard to study for a PH.D. in law.

Although it is more difficult for people with disabilities to pursue their education, Chen said he hopes his story could encourage others.

Taipei City's Department of Social Welfare each year provides assisted living instruments to around 13,000 disabled people to helpthem enjoy a quality life.

(By Yu Jou-yu, Lin Chang-shun and Maia Huang)