Arise legislative recap: June 7, 2019
Arise's Robyn Hyden looks back at some important policy wins -- and previews what's still to come -- following the conclusion of the Alabama Legislature's 2019 regular session.
The 2019 session that was, and the one yet to come
Alabama legislators ended their 2019 regular session last week. But they’re not done yet. Amid the threat of federal intervention, the Legislature likely will hold a special session this fall to address horrendous conditions in our state’s overcrowded prisons. This summer, Arise will continue making the case that meaningful prison reform must include Medicaid expansion. [...]
Alabama’s prison reform solution must include Medicaid expansion
Alabama’s prison crisis is about more than overcrowding and understaffing. It’s about the generational impacts of a criminal justice system warped by racism, chronic poverty, inadequate education and poor health. The solution will require both new revenue and broad policy reform. And one essential step is to extend health coverage to uninsured Alabama adults with [...]
Arise legislative recap: May 31, 2019
Good news: We saw a breakthrough on civil asset forfeiture when the Alabama Legislature passed SB 191 this week! The version of the bill that lawmakers sent to the governor omits many of the due process protections that were in the original version. But it still will shine more light on this practice. And greater [...]
In the News
Civil asset forfeiture disclosures will soon be required in Alabama
"SB 191's passage is a good first step toward bringing more transparency to Alabama's civil asset forfeiture practices," Arise's Robyn Hyden tells Bama Politics. "But simply gathering more information about the problem isn't enough. We must change our state's forfeiture practices to ensure they protect due process for all Alabamians." Read more in Bama Politics.
On civil asset forfeiture reform, transparency is a good start – but there’s more to do
Civil asset forfeiture in Alabama lacks public accountability and tramples the property rights of thousands of people. Hundreds of Alabamians lose cash, cars and other property under this practice every year. Many of them are never convicted of a crime – or even charged with one. And many people can’t afford to hire a lawyer to [...]
Civil asset forfeiture transparency bill is a good start, but Alabamians still need much stronger protections
The Alabama House on Thursday passed SB 191, which would increase transparency around civil asset forfeiture in the state, sending it to Gov. Kay Ivey. Alabama Arise executive director Robyn Hyden issued the following statement in response: “SB 191’s passage is a good first step toward bringing more transparency to Alabama’s civil asset forfeiture practices. [...]
Arise legislative recap: May 24, 2019
The uncertainty over 2020 CHIP funding showcases the fundamental problem with Alabama's budgets: Our state doesn’t bring in enough money to fund basic needs adequately. Arise's Carol Gundlach explores that topic in this week's legislative recap.
CFPB’s move to gut consumer protections shows need for state-level payday lending reform
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) should serve consumers, not the industries it regulates. That’s why Alabama Arise submitted a comment last week objecting to the CFPB’s plan to reverse an important consumer protection. And that’s why Arise will continue to push for needed reforms at the Legislature. The federal ability-to-repay rule, set to take [...]
Arise legislative recap: May 17, 2019
Legislators talked a lot about pregnancy and childbirth at the State House this week, but the spotlight has left some disturbing facts about the reality of health care in Alabama in the shadows. Arise's Jim Carnes talks about why it’s so crucial for Alabama to expand Medicaid to strengthen the state’s health care system and [...]