Blog

Public policy should make life better for everyone, not just a select few. Throughout the year, Arise tracks a range of state and federal policy proposals and assesses what they would mean for Alabamians who are struggling to make ends meet. Our blog provides quick updates on these proposals and offers tips on what you can do to help build an Alabama where all people have an opportunity to reach their full potential.

  • Show These Issues

  • Show These Authors

Fact Sheet

Federal law strengthened SNAP amid COVID-19 pandemic, but benefit increase still needed

The economic meltdown resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic has created an extraordinary demand for food assistance. State agencies are working overtime to figure out how to get food to hungry Alabamians while schools are closed, people are sheltering in place and the risk of infection is high. Applications for food assistance through the Supplemental Nutrition [...]
Issue
Safety Net
Date
April 3, 2020
Author
Carol Gundlach
Fact Sheet

Unemployment insurance improvements, recovery rebates will help Alabamians hurt by COVID-19 pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic has caused an unprecedented increase in unemployment insurance claims nationally. And the story is the same in Alabama, where 74,056 UI claims were filed in the week ending Saturday, March 28. That’s easily a record high since 1987, the earliest year for which weekly data is available for Alabama. The number of [...]
Issues
Safety Net, Tax Reform, Economic Opportunity
Date
April 1, 2020
Author
Dev Wakeley
Blog

Arise legislative recap: March 27, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic will strain Alabama's health care system in unprecedented ways. Arise's Jim Carnes discusses how Medicaid expansion, elimination of enrollment barriers and other policy changes would help Medicaid save lives during and after this outbreak. Read our full list of recommendations here.
Issue
Health
Date
March 27, 2020
Author
Matt Okarmus
Blog

Targeted releases should be part of Alabama corrections system’s response to COVID-19 pandemic

State and local governments are responding in a variety of ways to the emergent coronavirus pandemic in Alabama. But that response thus far has fallen short where incarcerated people are concerned. The Alabama Department of Corrections (DOC) has more than 27,500 people in custody right now. (For context, that’s more people than live in Anniston, [...]
Issues
Criminal Justice, Health
Date
March 24, 2020
Author
Dev Wakeley
Blog

Alabama Arise’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Here at Alabama Arise, we share the uncertainty and worry that many of you may feel about COVID-19 and how best to prepare ourselves, help our neighbors and speak out for adequate resources and aid. Our first priority is the physical and mental health and safety of our members, partners and staff, and of people [...]
Issues
Health, Other
Date
March 17, 2020
Author
Robyn Hyden
Blog

COVID-19: 7 policy changes that would help protect Alabamians

The World Health Organization has labeled COVID-19 a global pandemic. And state officials announced the first confirmed case of the disease in Alabama on Friday. As the virus strains our health systems, schools and economy, we must ensure the most vulnerable Alabamians have the medical care, social supports and other protections they need to weather [...]
Issues
Budgets, Health, Safety Net, Tax Reform, Economic Opportunity
Date
March 13, 2020
Author
Robyn Hyden
Blog

Arise legislative recap: March 13, 2020

We're excited to introduce you this week to Sherrel Wheeler Stewart, Arise's new story collection coordinator. In this video, Sherrel talks about her new position and explains how you can help her tell the stories of uninsured and underinsured Alabamians who live in the Medicaid coverage gap. If you'd like to share your story with [...]
Issue
Health
Date
March 13, 2020
Author
Matt Okarmus
Blog

Education, health care, nutrition and more: Why the Census matters to Alabama

The 2020 Census is nearly here. In mid-March, the Census Bureau will begin mailing out informational postcards to all U.S. residents. The postcards will provide instructions on how to complete the Census for your household. Filling out the Census is important for a number of reasons. Alabama’s count impacts our state legislative districts and our [...]
Issues
Health, Safety Net, Other
Date
March 12, 2020
Author
Mike Nicholson
Blog

Ending an ‘unjust burden’: Alabama Arise testimony in favor of SB 144 to untax groceries

Arise’s Robyn Hyden testified to the Senate’s education budget committee Wednesday in support of SB 144. The bill, sponsored by Sen. Andrew Jones, R-Centre, would eliminate Alabama’s state sales tax on groceries and replace the lost revenue by capping the state deduction for federal income taxes. Here’s the full text of Hyden’s prepared remarks: Good [...]
Issue
Tax Reform
Date
March 11, 2020
Author
Robyn Hyden
Blog

Arise legislative recap: March 6, 2020

Arise's Jim Carnes discusses how the coronavirus outbreak and the closure of Pickens County Medical Center showcase Alabama's need for Medicaid expansion. Also, in the wake of the recent execution of Nathaniel Woods, Jim talks about HB 359, which would forbid the death penalty in capital cases where the jury does not agree unanimously to [...]
Issues
Budgets, Health
Date
March 6, 2020
Author
Matt Okarmus