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Albers Debates Welfare Act with Georgia State Law Students

Sen. John Albers engaged in a "lively discussion" about HB 861 with Georgia State University College of Law last week.

Sen. John Albers (R-Roswell) spoke with students in the Law and Social Welfare class at Georgia State University College of Law last week.

Albers discussed House Bill 861, also known as Georgia’s Social Responsibility and Accountability Act and was signed into law this past April. 

Instructed by Professor Courtney Anderson, the class prepared for the presentation by discussing the underlying policies and constitutionality of the bill and reading data produced by a number of organizations assessing the likelihood of the bill’s effectiveness.

“Speakers are invited to the course to challenge students’ views on issues and help them to present legal arguments in a way that anticipates the response of an opposing party,” said Anderson. “We are very appreciative of Senator Albers for giving his time to speak to our class. It was a lively discussion and an invaluable experience for our students to be able to engage directly with the sponsor of legislation relevant to social welfare.”

Students in the Law and Social Welfare class explore state and federal laws and policies addressing social welfare, including welfare reform, benefit programs, problems of the uninsured, and access to appropriate education, affordable housing, and safe environments.

HB 861 requires most applicants of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program to submit to a drug test prior to receiving benefits. Sen. Albers discussed how the act was drafted to increase personal responsibility for welfare recipients while distributing Georgia tax dollars in a more efficient manner. 

“This legislation offers families in need a ‘hand-up’ rather than a ‘hand-out,’” said Sen. Albers, “HB 861 will help to break the cycle of poverty and drug abuse and ensure that government tax dollars are not being used to purchase illegal narcotics. I was honored to assist in informing our future lawyers and attorneys of the issues they may face when practicing Social Welfare law. I look forward to seeing their limitless careers play out.”

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