While I was a student at ULL, I read the book “The Rewards of Hope” by Lafayette Doctor Norman Heard, M.D. which chronicled his opportunity along with at the time the Civitan club found Acadian Village as a work program to help those with developmental disabilities including Dr. Heard’s own Daughter. However; what has resulted was a broken promise by the Lafayette Association of Retarded Citizens to keep up Dr. Heard’s legacy which has resulted in cases of bullying, intimitation, and even neglict.
The investigation citing LARC’S violations from 2011 has a personal story for me because of the neglict, a consumer assulted a female participant at the 2010 Mental Health Rally in Baton Rouge and as mentioned, the individual could not be charged due to his Mental Retardation.
What is going on at LARC is disgusting and the time has come to make major reforms because first of all, Acadian Village should be a place to help those with Developmental Disabilities learn workplace skills, not be a sheltered workshop. As a matter of fact, there is a new requirement installed by the federal government to phase out sheltered workshops for supported employment, look at ARC of Caddo-Bossier, they have the model for supported employment for the ARC’s. What is going on at LARC probably has the family of Dr. Heard upset about what is going on, I have nothing against Acadian Village but make it what it was suppose to do when the village was built in 1976.