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Lt. Gov. Duncan tackles major topics

Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan visited LaGrange Tuesday morning to give remarks at the LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce Early Bird Breakfast and annual Valor Awards.  

“It is a such honor here today and an honor for me too because I have three sons, and my youngest is here with me today…I couldn’t think of a better place to bring a nine-year-old to sit in a room with full of heroes,” Duncan said. “It’s great to be back in Troup County.” 

Duncan focused his remarks on four major topics, teacher pay raises, the opioid crisis, human trafficking and health care — that he and Gov. Brian Kemp are focused on.  

“We decided to go to work and roll up our sleeves,” Duncan said. “We decided to do a lot of big things because that’s what we promised Georgia we would do. We were so proud to be able to tackle some of the big issues.” 

Duncan said that the $3,000 teacher pay raises that Gov. Kemp approved in May will help every community across Georgia because students will receive a quality education and in return become quality citizens. 

He noted that the governor and him are focused on tackling several health care issues, as well. 

“It is impossible for a community to grow if there’s not an arm’s reach distance of quality health care,” Duncan said. “We feel like taking on these issues are important, and we think it puts us in a position where Georgia continues to strive, grow and lead the national discussion of what a state is supposed to do. You all are an important part of this as anybody.” 

Without a safe, public safety community Duncan said than all the work is not worth it. 

“Know that this governor and this Lt. governor, are behind every single corner of the state’s public safety efforts from law enforcement to EMS and everyone in between,” Duncan said. 

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse in 2017, there were 1,014 overdose deaths involving opioids in Georgia — a rate of 9.7 deaths per 100,000 persons. This crisis is one that Duncan said they are working diligently to find the right tools and resources to give to public safety officers.

“Whether it be on the prevention side or on the rehabilitation side, everything in between, we are committed to looking for opportunities to help you in each of your communities,” Duncan said. “It effects every single community in the state. We can truly make a difference on the opioid crisis.”

Duncan applauded First Lady Marty Kemp for her efforts against human trafficking. 

“We are looking through the lens of what it is as a parent’s understanding,” Duncan said. “[We are] looking for the tools and recourses that we can give everybody in law enforcement and public safety. We do not want any human trafficking agency to feel comfortable in the state of Georgia. In fact we want them to run and run fast and not prey on the most innocent of our citizens.” 

Duncan said that legislators are going to put as much effort as they can to stop human trafficking in the state of Georgia. 

Duncan closed his remarks Tuesday morning with his “four c’s.” 

“Churches, charities, corporations and citizens,” Duncan said. “I think the four c’s are better equipped at answering a lot of the problems in our communities, and when people get it right, there is a partnership that is created…where people are able to swoop in and assist. I encourage everyone in this room as a community leader to lean-in with the four c’s and partner with so many folks in this room and around this community.”