"Who dat raising dem grandchildren?" That was the question asked last week in a press release from Sen. Sharon Weston Broome, D-Baton Rouge, promoting the third annual Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Grandrally. Louisiana has the nation's fourth-largest percentage of children living with grandparents — nearly one in 10 children in Louisiana, or 117,859 kids, live in grandparent-headed households. Of those, nearly 65,000 have neither parent present. Broome is pushing Senate Bill 57, which would create the Council on the Status of Grandparents Raising Grandchildren.
On a more somber note, Sen. Rob Marionneaux, D-Grosse Tete, again hosted his annual Military Family Day last Tuesday, just as Broome's rally came to a close. The tribute to Louisiana's fallen heroes is among the more poignant moments of the regular session. Since 2005, the Senate has honored 136 fallen soldiers, and last week another 11 were added to list. "We want to make sure that our military families know that we have not forgotten and will never forget the sacrifices made by our fallen heroes and their families, for the bravery they have shown in defense of our freedoms," Marionneaux says. "It is important that we officially recognize these brave men and women and we will continue to do so until every last one of them is home." — Jeremy Alford