Vice President Kamala Harris was in Acadiana today, talking about affordable, accessible high speed internet in a place that doesn't have it - Sunset.
Harris said high speed internet is a tool that is needed, but it's especially needed by children.
Watch her full speech:
"There is great significance to the passage of time when we think about a day in the life of our children, and what that means to the future of our nation, depending on whether or not they have the resources they need to achieve their God-given talent," Harris said.
Harris got the loudest response when she said that Louisiana is very lucky to have Gov. John Bel Edwards in a position of leadership. She said that, even before she and President Joe Biden were sworn in Edwards was a "national voice" for all people.
Back to internet, Harris said the pandemic brought home how necessary and basic internet access is. For school, health, commerce, work, "the internet has been and continues to be essential to perform our everyday needs."
But more than 42 million Americans do not have high speed internet, she said.
"Far too many of our fellow Americans cannot afford the cost of a high-speed internet plan," she said, adding that many also don't even have access.
Many rural areas of the country aren't connected to fiber, and must rely on satellite or dial-up access, she said.
"This community, which is why I am here, is all too familiar with these challenges," she said.
Thirty percent of St. Landry Parish households don't have high-speed internet, Harris said. Students are sitting in fast food parking lots to access wifi to do homework, she said. Older folks are doing telemedicine visits in public libraries, she said.
The bipartisan infrastructure law contains billions to lay miles of fiber to help households lower their monthly bill or get access, Harris said.
Harris also announced $60 million in flood resilience funding, with $40 million earmarked for Louisiana.
Harris's plane landed around 10:40 am on March 21, at Lafayette Regional Airport.
Upon exiting the plane, Harris was greeted by Governor John Bel Edwards and Lafayette Mayor President Josh Guillory, among others.
Before being escorted by car to Sunset, Harris stopped to speak with three National Guard members who were standing near her vehicle on the tarmac.
While in Sunset, Harris took a tour of the Armand J. Brinkhaus Community Library.
KATC will provide details about the visit tonight on KATC and KATC.com.
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