On March 2, AARP Georgia mobilized volunteer advocates at the state Capitol on behalf of nearly 1 million members across Georgia. Coordinated by Melissa Sinden, AARP Georgia, Associate State Director-Advocacy, Lobby Day provided an opportunity for volunteers to learn about our legislative priorities and convene with elected officials ensuring full optimization of our grassroots strategies.
AARP GA State Director Greg Tanner and State President Joe Dukes addressed the volunteers, expressing the impact and relevance they are creating statewide. Volunteers gathered from throughout the state to include diverse areas such as East Point, Baconton, Griffin, Carrollton, Conyers, Roswell, Decatur, Lizella, Fairburn, and Riverdale.
Following the advocacy briefing, volunteers assembled to meet with their respective elected officials discussing the following AARP GA legislative priorities:
The Family Care Act (HB 92), which would enable Georgians to use up to five days of their earned sick time to care for loved ones. An estimated 878,000 people in the state currently may not use sick leave to care for a loved one in need, forcing them choose between the health of a loved one and keeping food on the table.
The More Take Home Pay Act of 2015 (HB 445) as written, would create a new tax on groceries and the use and sales of digital products. Many seniors living on fixed incomes pay virtually no income taxes. HB 445, which cuts income taxes and increases sales taxes, would create a new tax burden for them. If HB 445 is passed, the sales tax on essential items like milk, eggs, fresh fruit, and vegetables will increase by 5 percent.
Lobby Day was successful in growing awareness and engagement on aging issues impacting Georgians and their families. AARP has a significant resource to accomplish many of our legislative goals and that resource is our volunteers. Our volunteers play a key role in AARP’s mission to lead positive social change.
Pictured: Arthur Tarpkin, AARP Georgia Advocacy Volunteer, Fairburn; Joe Dukes, AARP Georgia State President; Rep. John Carson (R-46)
Photo Credit: Gary Oliver, AARP Georgia