More than 100 members of The Links, Inc. from 15 Georgia chapters located in Albany, Athens, Atlanta Cluster (6 chapters), Augusta, Brunswick, Columbus, Fort Valley, La- Grange, Macon and Savannah will participate in Links Day at the Capitol Friday, March 21, 2014 in the Sloppy Floyd Building, Empire Room 200 Piedmont Ave. NE, 20th Floor – West Tower Atlanta, GA 30334 .
Georgia Legislators and Link members Senator Freddie Powell Sims (Albany) and Representative Carolyn Hughley (Columbus) will serve as honorary chairs of the event. Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, State Rep. Stacey Abrams, head of Georgia Legislative Black Caucus Representative Dee Dawkins-Haigler and Links, Inc. Southern Area Director Eneid Francis will address the members.
Link members will convene upon the state capitol to urge legislators to support (SB) 295 and defeat (HB) 990 which creates an additional impediment to Medicaid expansion as they call for the Governor’s reconsideration of his decision to forgo participation in Medicaid Expansion. They will also encourage the passage of (HB) 923 Georgia Child Fatality Review Panel, which calls attention to the improvement of protecting the health, safety and well-being of children. The Links will host a forum that will include two panel discussions in support of these bills.
From 10:30-1:15 the first Panel Discussion will be held, moderated by Cynthia Tucker (Former AJC Editor) & Sheila Robinson-Douglass, MD. (Links, Inc.), covering “The Medicaid Expansion: Why Not Now, Why Not Today.” Panelists include: Pat Gardner, Georgia State Representative — Initiated efforts to expand PeachCare; Link Lisa Perry-Gikes, MD. — President of Medical Association of Atlanta; Lawrence Sanders, MD. — Associate dean for Clinical Affairs at Morehouse School of Medicine; and William Cleveland, MD. — Clinical Nephrologist, Past President, Crawford Long medical staff.
The second Panel Discussion will be held from 11:30am – 12:15pm and covers “Children’s Welfare: Protecting Our Greatest Legacy” The Panel will be moderated by Karyn Greer (WXIA) & Nina R. Hickson, Esq. (Links, Inc.) Panelists include: State Rep. Mary Margaret Oliver — Authored and passed significant legislation for the protection of children; Melody McCloud, MD — Calling for oversight of DFCS case management and particularly; and Hon. Tom Rawlings — Former circuit juvenile court judge, Georgia’s state advocate for the protection of children.
The Links will address these and other critical issues when meeting with their individual state legislators following the panel discussions. A closing rally, Linking Together Across the State to Engage Our Communities, will take place at 2pm at the Georgia State Capitol, North Wing and a statewide advocacy strategy will be implemented for all Georgia chapters.