Residents brought their issues to the table telling personal accounts of what they say are negligent law makers that range from veterans affairs to treatment of the disabled; each person hoping to get some kind of resolution from the congressman.
The tension could be cut inside the Grovetown Senior Center as Congressman John Barrow heard the pleas of Columbia County Residents. Pleas like those from Cherie Nuttall.
“I wanted to just see if the congressman could help me or give me some ideas of what I can do to help my son,” says Nuttall.
A single mother of three, she had to quit her job to take care of her disabled son Nathan. According to Nuttall, Nathan is severely disabled by a rare form of autism and cannot control his temper.
She explains, “he and I both went to the emergency room and DFACs has custody; Columbia County DFACS. And, as I understand they're having a hard time placing him.”
A 2010 settlement between the state of Georgia and the U.S. Department of Justice banned treatment in state hospitals for patients with developmental disabilities like Nathan's — making Nuttall's opportunity to speak with the congressman imperative.
“I really think he genuinely wants to help all the people in Georgia,” she adds.
Congressman Barrow says the concerns of residents like Nuttalls won't just fall on deaf ears.
Barrow says, “one member of Congress cares about their concerns. That's because I put the interest of the district I represent ahead of any party or any elected leadership; no matter which office they're in or what side of the isle they're on.”
Congressman Barrow took the names of each of the complainants with the promise that he'd look into them. To take a look at that settlement for yourself, visit http://dbhdd.georgia.gov/settlement-agreement