Updated: Apr 9
Posted: Tue 8:47 AM, Apr 23, 2019
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- A bill intended to give alternatives to jail time for non-violent offenders who are caregivers for children is now making its way to Governor Lee's desk. The bill, known as the Primary Caregiver Bill, would give consideration for non-violent offenders who are caregivers for a dependent children to instead have community-based alternatives to incarceration. The bill was sponsored by Senator Brenda Gilmore (D-Nashville) and Leader Karen Camper (D-Memphis) and passed with bi-partisan support. “One of the most traumatic things that can happen to a child is to be taken away from their mother when she is the person they trust the most,” said Jawharrah Bahar, a formerly incarcerated mother and organizer for Free Hearts, an organization that led the community advocacy efforts for this legislation. “And one of the hardest things for a mother to do is rebuild the bond with their child again after years of separation.” Bill is title Senate Bill 0985/House Bill 1449.