Cobb Democracy Center Launches Disciplines of Democracy Series
On May 20th, the Cobb County Democracy Center hosted the Disciples of Democracy, a multi-part series designed to educate and increase civic literacy and prepare citizens for various community engagement actions.
Joining Executive Director Dr. Monica Brown for the first meeting in the series was Mableton Mayor Michael Owens and District 4 Councilwoman Keisha Jeffcoat as well as various members of the community. Speakers during the program included State Senator Dr. Michael Rhett, State Representatives Lisa Campbell and Terry Cummings, former State Representative Eric Allen, and Dr. Ben Williams, President of SCLC Cobb.
Together, they shared information on the legislative process and provided insights on what happens with a bill from the moment that it is drafted, how it makes its way through one chamber and then the other, how it may be impacted by other amendments, the consensus needed for it to pass both chambers and how it can get to the Governor’s desk for signature. They also explained why many important and impactful bills never make it beyond a certain point during the process. Lastly, they encourage the audience to stay involved with the process and to let their voices be heard on issues of importance to all of the Legislators at the Gold Dome, not just a few. The next meeting in the series is slated for June.
The Cobb County Democracy Center uses research and community engagement to educate and empower underrepresented voters to increase civic literacy, engage in elections and advocate for the right to vote. In 2020, the following issues were collected from Black Georgians regarding issues that concerned them most.
- Accessible and Affordable Housing equity
- Criminal Justice reform/equity
- Education equity
- Economic equity
- Environmental justice
- Gun Safety
- Health equity
- Reproductive Justice
- Voting equity
Because these issues are critical, the Cobb County Democracy Center is committed to educating and training the Cobb Community to connect the dots between these issues and the types of legislation that correlate to them. The Center believes that a greater understanding of these policy factors by the community will have a positive influence on the living environment of affected people.
Community End Goal
The goals of the Democracy Center are to increase civic literacy to increase voter knowledge and participation; build coalitions centered on policy interests; study the impact legislation has on communities; help communities increase engagement; provide input on how to best navigate each legislative session; and create community strategic plans to prepare for the next legislative session.