2023 Kids at the Capitol

Kids at the Capitol: 2023 Legislative Summary

Arkansas’s 2023 General Assembly passed 889 bills. Many of these new laws will impact Arkansas’ kids. From depression-screening coverage for pregnant women and new moms to free school meals for more kids, our Kids at the Capitol 2023 Legislative Summary has it all. Read about the good laws that passed, the missed opportunities, and the […]

Holding the Line for Kids

Protecting Children’s Health Coverage in the Face of Major Challenges Arkansas has historically been a leader in children’s health coverage, with almost 95%  of our state’s children covered by health insurance. But we’re entering a critical period to hold the line on that good track record. With next month’s official end of policies designed to […]

How Arkansas Educators Lost Their Collective Bargaining Rights

Arkansas teachers lost more employment protections with the final passage of the Arkansas LEARNS Act. But before this bill was even filed, teachers here already had some of the weakest union bargaining rights in the nation. How did it come to this? The most recent law to contribute to this was Act 612 of 2021. […]

Advocating for Change: An AACF Advocacy Guide

When Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families meets with people around the state, we hear similar stories: in El Dorado and Jonesboro, we hear about the negative impact of unfair rental laws on children’s health. In Springdale and Little Rock, we’re told of the ability of early childhood education to ensure kids’ long-term success. In […]

School Discipline in Arkansas: Reforms Needed to Improve Outcomes

We all want Arkansas schools to be safe, healthy, and orderly environments so every student can learn and thrive. Kids need clear expectations for behavior and logical consequences to grow academically and learn from their mistakes. However, many outdated school discipline policies and practices in Arkansas can create more problems than they solve. Harsh, arbitrary, […]

Postpartum Care in Arkansas: A Crisis of Coverage

Babies need their mothers; children need their parents. Everyone should have the opportunity to raise their children and live out their full life expectancy. However, this opportunity is denied many babies and their mothers due to the mother’s death following childbirth. In this brief we discuss the need for Arkansas Medicaid to extend maternity coverage […]

Report: The Critical State of Black Women’s Health

The state of Black women’s health is in critical condition, due to the systemic racism, discrimination, and implicit bias that Black women face within the health care system. To combat the intersecting factors that create an inequitable health care experience for Black women, the following aggressive strategies must be implemented. Create policies with an intentional […]

2021 Annual Report Cover

2021 Annual Report

Year two of the COVID-19 pandemic had our staff continuing to adapt to a mostly virtual world as we worked with our partners, fellow advocates, and policymakers to advance our mission. The 2021 state legislative session brought particular challenges, not only because we were conducting our advocacy work primarily virtually, but also because of the […]

2022 Voters’ Guide

For the staff at Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families, election years are exciting. Many policies and laws that don’t often get much attention can become a major part of the election debate. That increases their importance for candidates, the media, and the public. But the opposite can also be true. Without advocacy from people […]