Creating a Prosperous Future: Reducing Poverty in Arkansas

Imagine you’re exhausted. You’ve worked for the past 20 hours straight, your son has a cold that has gotten worse over the last week and your daycare won’t let him come back until he’s fever-free. You have to take tomorrow off from both your jobs to stay home with him and you don’t have the money to take him to the doctor to make sure it’s not becoming something more serious. And to top off your day, you got a second notice from the electric company that says if you don’t pay your bill in full by the end of the week, your electricity will be shut off. This story, and others like it, is far too common in our state. Too many Arkansans are struggling to make ends meet every day. Poverty not only impacts the lives and well-being of our citizens today, but the future success of our children, and our state’s ability to compete in the global economy. As a state, we need to focus on making sure every Arkansas family has the resources to meet their basic needs and ensure that every child has the opportunity to live a healthy and productive life. We have a long way to go to meet that vision.