Barton Child Law and Policy Center Newsletter
Dear Child Advocates, this update contains:
Georgia Capitol Update
Bills of Interest to Child Advocates
Next Georgia Child Welfare Legal Academy February 22
Follow Us on Twitter!
Georgia Capitol Update

Last week the General Assembly was in adjournment.  However, there was some activity. Highlights of the week of January 21-25 include:

  • The House of Representatives and Senate held joint hearings on the Governor's budget proposals for the Amended Fiscal Year 2013 and for Fiscal Year 2014.  Highlights of those proposals include:
    • The Governor's Office for Children and Families would receive less funding for community strategy grants, but would be given $5 million to provide incentive grants for community-based alternatives to detention for juvenile offenders.
    • The Department of Human Services would be eliminating a number of staff positions, one child care licensing surveyor, two family connection positions, and 35 child support services positions.
    • The Department of Juvenile Justice budget includes funding for a new Regional Youth Detention Center (RYDC) in Rockdale scheduled to open on July 1, 2013, and a new Youth Development Campus (YDC) scheduled to open on January 1, 2014.  
  • The Joint Human Trafficking Study Committee released its final report.

This week the General Assembly will be in session on Monday.  The schedule for the remainder of the week has not yet been set.  Some scheduled events of particular interest to child advocates include:

  • The new House Juvenile Justice Committee will hold and organizational meeting on Monday, January 28, 2013 at 3pm in room 506 of the Coverdell Legislative Office Building. 
  • The Georgia Child Advocacy Network (Georgia CAN) will meet on Tuesday, January 29, 2013 at 10am in room 122 of the Capitol.

Please note that information on meetings and legislative schedule is current as of Monday, January 28, 2013.  Hearing times change frequently during the session, so you may want to check the Georgia General Assembly or other organizations' web sites for the any changes. 


Bills of Interest to Child Advocates


HB 21 was introduced by Representative Mary Margaret Oliver (D-Decatur) on January 15, 2013. This bill would add a new code section to O.C.G.A. Title 19 to provide for agreements for ongoing contact between birth relatives and adoptive families. The child would be a party to the agreement, and if 14 years of age or older, would have to consent. In order to be enforceable, the agreement would have to be filed with the court with 30 days of the filing of the adoption petition.  HB 21 has been assigned to the House Juvenile Justice Committee.    


HB 46 was introduced by Representative Billy Mitchell (D-Stone Mountain) on January 15, 2013.  This bill would amend O.C.G.A. Title 20, Chapter 1A to require child protective services records to be checked for all directors and employees of day care centers. Anyone with an unsatisfactory report would not be permitted to work at a day care center. HB 46 has been assigned to the House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee.   


HR 2 was introduced by Representative Keisha Waites (D-Atlanta) on January 16, 2013.  This is a resolution to urge Congress to increase penalties for human trafficking, including the commercial sexual exploitation of children. HR 2 has been assigned to the House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee.     


SR 10 was introduced by Senator Donzella James (D-Atlanta) on January 15, 2013.  This is a resolution to urge Congress to require children to have identification to board domestic flights in order to protect children from being trafficked between states.  SR 10 has been assigned to the Senate Health and Human Services Committee.     


Next Georgia Child Welfare Legal Academy to Be Held Friday, February 22, 2013   

Young Brains and Education


On Friday, February 22, from 9:00-11am, at Emory Law School, Commissioner Bobby Cagle, Department of Early Care and Learning (DECAL) and Stephanie Blank, founding chair of the governing board of the Georgia Early Education Alliance for Ready Students (GEEARS) will present " Young Brains and Education: What is the return on investment for high quality child care?  What can you do to ensure high quality child care for court and agency involved children?"


The presentation will be streamed live via the internet and will also be archived.  On Feb 22, at 9am please see and click on "Young Brains" to view the presentation live.


Emory University School of Law will host the broadcast from Tull Auditorium which will also be open for attendance at no charge. 2.0 regular CLE credits for attorneys will be offered for $10, cash or check payable at the door.  To register to attend the live event, please follow this link: 


In addition to the Barton Center, DECAL and GEEARS sponsorship, this event is also  made possible by funding from the  Community Foundation of Greater Atlanta and the  Committee on Justice for Children.    Additional partners providing in kind assistance for this class so far include:  Family Connection Partnership,  Georgia Appleseed Center for Law and Justice; Georgia CASA:  the Georgia Department of Education; the Georgia Department of Human Services; Prevent Child Abuse Georgia; and Voices for Georgia's Children.


Follow us on Twitter


The Barton Center is twittering information relevant to child advocacy at the Capitol.  Follow us  at @bartoncenter at to get up-to-the-minute information on topics such as:

  • Times, dates, and locations of advocacy meetings and legislative hearings;
  • Status of juvenile court-related legislation;
  • Action alerts for important pro-child initiatives; and
  • News and research on best practices for children's law.

Begin following us by clicking on the Twitter icon to the right!  Follow us on Twitter 


Quick Links...
Learn more about our work at the Barton Child Law and Policy Website.

Learn more about our educational opportunities for law students and other graduate students at the Barton Center at Emory Law Website.

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