Valdosta - As the debate continues over stem cell research a south Georgia senator is working to create a research center in the state. Tim Golden of Valdosta says the centers are needed to help people with diseases that could possibly be cured by stem cell transplants.
Sarah Bartholomew has lived with diabetes for 39 years. "The ravages of diabetes, the blindness, kidney disease, wounds healing and that sort of thing have begun to effect me very directly," Bartholomew says.
She joins state senator Tim Golden on his mission to pass a bill that would pay for stem cell research and establish a research facility in Georgia. "It's a hope, its a dream. It's a dream I have for myself of course but also a dream for hundreds of thousands of Georgians, for people across the country and for children who come behind us with these devastating diseases," she added
During the last legislative session, Golden co-sponsored a bill dubbed Search for the Cure Act. "Basically what we're trying to do is promote a bill that would ban cloning; it would be up to the individual who would have to give written consent to use their embryos for research so there are all kinds of protections built into the bill that would protect people of religious beliefs," Golden explained. The bill was not passed.
At the doctor's office we've all had our figures pricked to test our blood sugar levels. Diabetics must do this 6 times a day. Stem cell research in Georgia and throughout the country could one day make this obsolete.
Golden believes that a stem cell bill with ethical provisions could make that day come sooner. "We ought to be perusing anything we can to help alleviate people's pain. That's why I'm promoting a new reasonable balanced stem cell bill because I think eventually its coming."
Until then Sarah will continue to speak out about these issues. Senator Tim Golden will reintroduce the bill in January's General Assembly session.