Press Advisory: Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition of Georgia Honors State Legislators

ATLANTA, Georgia, U.S. — February 11, 2021 — Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition of Georgia is excited to announce our 2021 Legislative Event: Advocacy in a Virtual World and Beyond will be held in collaboration with March of Dimes Georgia online on February 18, 2021 from 11:00AM – 12:30PM. 

Four legislators have been honored with HMHBGA’s Charlotte Wilen Advocate of the Year Award. The Wilen Award acknowledges the hard work and efforts of our State’s lawmakers to improve maternal and child health through policy change. Charlotte Wilen was an avid advocate for Georgia’s families during her life and was the founder of HMHBGA in 1974. HMHBGA is pleased to congratulate the following policy makers whose contributions in the 2020 Legislative Session made a lasting impact for Georgia families: 

  • Chairman Bran Strickland (R – McDonough) for the passage of SB 408, which will extend the Family Care Act, allowing employees to use sick time to care for immediate family members.
  • Chairman Butch Parrish (R – Swainsboro)for prioritizing maternal mortality in the state budget.
  • Chairwoman Sharon Cooper (R – Marietta) for the passage of HB 1114, which will extend Pregnancy Medicaid to six months postpartum.
  • Representative Park Cannon (D – Atlanta) for prioritizing the Working for Two Act, which would provide accommodations for pregnant and postpartum employees. 

“I think most of us have come to realize that we can spend a little money up front and make sure we try to get that prenatal care for that mom and take care of that new baby. It saves a lot of money in the long run and a lot of heartache and pain and suffering along the way. It helps us produce healthier mothers and healthier babies and we’re just proud to be a part of that.” -Chairman Butch Parrish

“Mothers are extremely important and so are their babies and children. I lost my mother when I was 12. I know what that did for my life and what a difference it made and I cannot imagine what it would be like to lose my mother at a young age. That is one of the things that motivated me to work so hard on our maternal mortality issue and to actually get $20 million in funds to support a six month expansion.” -Chairwoman Sharon Cooper

“As a labor doula and a childbirth educator here in the state of Georgia, I would like to thank all of the Charlottes, especially the one who this award is named after, for making sure that lawmakers are paying attention and are being understanding of how difficult these times really are. We certainly do not want any person of childbirth experience to have to choose between a paycheck and a healthy pregnancy, so I look forward to continuing to learn about these issues and to hear from Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies.” -Representative Park Cannon

“I think what we’re doing is stating the policy of the state is to welcome companies that will give flexibility to their workers.” -Representative Strickland (Bandlamudi, Georgia Senate Passes Family Sick Leave Legislation 2017)