The Arkansas Kids Count Coalition, led by Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families, works to raise awareness about pressing policy issues impacting children and to teach people how to lobby and advocate. The coalition will be updating this page throughout the year to provide tips and resources to help you achieve your advocacy goals to improve the lives of kids in our state.
Let’s aspire as we start 2022!
- What’s your advocacy resolution? with January’s advocacy action, Make A New Year’s advocacy resolution
- What’s the Arkansas General Assembly Fiscal Session? with February’s advocacy action, Watch the Fiscal Session
- Event recording: Policy and Advocacy Updates for the New Year
- Follow-up resources: for Policy and Advocacy Updates for the New Year event
1. Arkansas House of Representatives
2. Arkansas Senate
3. Arkansas State Legislature page: here you can search and set-up alerts for bills, check current laws, find out who
serves on different committees, view committee schedules, watch meetings live, and get the contact information
of your legislators.
4. Sign-up for Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families action alerts, if you have not already, to receive alerts
on pressing bills and legislative updates.
5. KIDS COUNT Data Center
6. Congress Should Adopt American Families Plan’s Permanent Expansions of Child Tax Credit and EITC, Make
Additional Provisions Permanent from the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities – this article includes state data
7. Recent blogs and publications on hunger in Arkansas from Arkansas Advocates
- Event recording: COVID-19 & Hispanic/Latino Arkansans English and Spanish closed captioning available
- Follow-up resources: for COVID-19 & Hispanic/Latino Arkansans
1. Hispanic Women’s Organization of Arkansas website and Facebook
2. Arkansas Department of Health COVID-19 page and COVID resource page in Spanish
3. Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families, Immigrant Families blog posts and other research
- Advocating on the issue during the election year, with March’s action, find out who is running to be your state Senator and Representative.
- Event Recording: Advocating on the Issues in an Election Year
- Follow-up resources for: Advocating on the Issues in an Election Year
1. Countdown: 10 Types of Advocacy
2. Arkansas Advocates 2022 Voters’ Guide
3. Bolder Advocacy
4. Arkansas VoterView
5. Arkansas Political Directory
7. Planning a Voter Registration Drive
8. Recording: Advocacy 101: Creating an Advocacy plan that works for you
9. Info from the AR Secretary of State’s Office on ballot measures
10. Ballot Initiative Strategy Center
- Advocating for a fair and effective use of historic K-12 funding
- Building a Movement for Arkansas’s Kids, with April’s action, take time to think through your response to the question: what can you as an individual, and we as a group, do to help build a movement for Arkansas’s kids?
This month’s theme is “Building a Movement for Arkansas Kids,” because we know there is no single policy or advocate that can alone improve the lives of our state’s children. We need to consider the many needs of our state’s children and work together to ensure that the well-being of our children is the number one priority of elected officials.
We will be calling on you to work with your fellow child advocates around Arkansas to build a movement for Arkansas’s kids that reaches our state Capitol.
- Through June, the Arkansas Kids Count Coalition is hosting roundtable discussions around the state on the topic of Building a Movement for Arkansas’s Kids. Follow-up resources:
1. Arkansas Advocates 2022 Voters’ Guide
2. Recording: Advocating on the issues in an election year
3. Countdown: 10 Types of Policy Advocacy
4. Advocating for a fair and effective use of historic K-12 funding
5. Arkansas CCDF State Plan Analysis for FY 2019-2021 and FY 2022-2024
6. Food prices are soaring, but Arkansas turned down grocery money for kids
7. Eliminating Needed Access to Food Programs This Summer Hurts Kids
8. AACF Statement on Hutchinson’s Rejection of Federal Funds
9. Postpartum Care in Arkansas: A Crisis of Coverage
10. Report: The Critical State of Black Women’s Health
11. PDF: Medicaid Story Collection Project Flyer
12. PDF: Medicaid flyer re: updating contact information
This month’s action is very important, go vote! Tuesday May 24th, is Primary Election Day.
Visit Arkansas VoterView to find out where to vote and view sample ballots to learn ahead of time the issues and races you will be voting on.
Voting locations will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. As long as you are in line to vote before closing time, you are allowed to vote.
These organizations can assist you if you cannot access your polling place, are turned away from voting, or have other issues when exercising your right to vote:
– American Civil Liberties Union Voter Protection Hotline:
– Disability Rights Arkansas: 800-482-1174
– Election Protection Coalition Helpline: 866-687-8683
– Para Español: Si se encuentra con dificultades al votar y
necesita ayuda en Español, por favor contacte a Arkansas
Time to start planning
In the coming months advocacy groups around the state, including Kids Count convener Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families, will make plans for their 2023 legislative advocacy. You’ll hear from them about new laws they hope to pass and how you can advocate with them.
But there are many advocates, including maybe you, who already have specific new laws they want to lobby for. And the summer is a great time to make a plan for how you will advocate at the state Capitol and in your community for some of the policies you support. Planning ahead can help ensure that kids have a voice at the state Capitol. Because like we always say, laws are made by the people who show up. And if we show up for kids at the Capitol, we can make great things happen! But it can take time, sometimes many years, and it takes a plan.
To make your plan, you can watch this training recording by Rebecca Zimmermann, Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families Community Engagement Director, on how to create an advocacy plan that works best for you or your organization. Arkansas Advocates also created the Countdown: 10 Types of Policy Advocacy guide to give you ideas of some of the many ways you can advocate for (or against) a law. You can also watch this training that dives deeper into one of those methods, issue-based election advocacy, which is a great form of advocacy to use for the remainder of 2022.
If you have questions after watching the trainings, you can schedule a meeting with Rebecca. Just send her an email at email@example.com.
Education Advocacy Month
In July, the Arkansas Kids Count Coalition and Arkansas Advocates will also be celebrating what we are calling “Education Advocacy Month.” We will host virtual events, release new research, and share other important information online to help you advocate at many different levels of government for your child’s education and for all Arkansas kids.
Register today for these two great events.
K-12 Education Advocacy-What decisions are made where
When: Thursday, July 7 from 5:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m.
Where: Zoom Webinar
Learn more and register
Early Childhood Education and Arkansas’s Workforce Virtual Forum
When: Thursday, July 14 from 5:30 p.m.- 6:30 p.m.
Where: Zoom Meeting
Learn more and register