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Wednesday, May 29, 2024

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Trump case expected to head to the jury today; IN food banks concerned about draft Farm Bill; NH parents, educators urge veto of anti-LGBTQ+ bills; Study shows a precipitous drop in migratory fish populations, in US and worldwide.

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Actor Robert DeNiro joins Capitol Police officers to protest against Donald Trump at his New York hush money trial as both sides make closing arguments. And the Democratic Party moves to make sure President Biden will be on the ballot in Ohio.

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Smokey Bear thought only "you" could prevent forest fires, but decomposing mushrooms may also help, a Native American community in Oregon is achieving healthcare sovereignty, and Colorado farmers hope fast-maturing, drought-tolerant seeds will better handle climate change.

'Day on the Hill' in Arkansas calls for investment in families

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Thursday, April 11, 2024   

Family advocates are at the State Capital for a "Day on the Hill" rally today, to voice their concerns to lawmakers about issues affecting Arkansans' quality of life.

The Arkansas Coalition for Strong Families and other organizations would like to see more investments in programs such as preschool, disability services and affordable housing.

Syard Evans, CEO of the Arkansas Support Network and co-chair of the coalition, said it wants to raise awareness and ensure marginalized communities have a voice in state budgeting.

"It's to make sure that when our legislative body convenes and they engage in the work of decision-making around the finances of the state and the budget of the state, we want to make sure that everyday Arkansans need investments in the services and supports," Evans explained.

She pointed out data show in order to be a healthy, functional family, the annual cost of living for a two-parent family with two children in Arkansas should be a little more than $90,000. It represents what it costs to meet basic needs of housing, food and clothing. However, the median household income in Arkansas is about $56,335.

Evans explained members of the coalition are witnesses to the deficiencies in underfunded service systems and she contended the latest appropriation does not adequately fund state services.

"The governor recently announced her draft budget and was very proud of the fact that the budget really has a tiny, tiny increase in it, like a 1.7% increase, which doesn't keep up with inflation," Evans stressed.

Evans noted the coalition works on mental health care, education, disability rights, racial equity, family economic well-being and more. She added they teamed up with the nonprofit child advocacy organization Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families for the Day on the Hill.


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