Monday, November 03, 2014

Welcome to the COP 24/7 Reboot 2.0

So have you missed us? Did you wonder what the heck is going on? Perhaps you had thoughts that there was something else brewing for Arkansas' longest running daily blog? Well you would be on the right track as we have been experimenting with all manner of how this platform needs to continue. We checked analytical information. Looked under the hood to see if content was relevant and made some type of connection. For the most part, yes.

There was a review of style, links, and other assorted ancillary items that come with producing this platform. Through it all, what was decided was that COP 24/7 has done a hell of job as the "little blog" that has posted consistently over the last ten years, topping out at over 1100 post to date. That translates into to about 150,000 words on topics ranging from female circumcision to addressing the plight of fatherless young men especially gay men of color who are profoundly impacted by this phenomenon.

It's all in this time capsule of "what was I thinking," over the last decade and a snapshot of what was really going on in the world. So what' new you ask, well we have retooled, decided to have some rotating backdrops, staying with our forthright coverage while continuing our dedicated mission to address HIV and AIDS in Arkansas. This platform supports the new Community Connector initiative that seeks to serve as another direct level of prevention and intervention in the MSM community. 

COP 24/7 believes that this first of its kind approach in Arkansas will be instrumental in forging the pathway of the "next generation" of intervention engagement to assist with linkage to care, return to care and identifying other challenges and barriers that fuel additional HIV infections. COP 24/7 and our media partner The READ will be highlighting the new contractors as well as, specifics to their proposed work in their respective communities. Well, here we go again...hoping to bring you more of what you are looking for!

Turn Out To VOTE

As Early voting rolls to a close today, don't forget that although I'm sure that you have had with all the political advertising that seems to drone on like no tomorrow, its is all about tomorrow as everyone must vote. There's just no if, and or but about it. Voting is the great equalizer that gives the nations citizens a "say" in who get's elected at the ballot box and whether these folks will make you the lunch in the box. No matter your political affiliation or if you believe that this cycle is your last chance to express your attitude about the current administration, what really is at stake is who will be at the policy table after the election fall out. 
 Locally we've got numerous interesting campaigns that warrant everyone's attention. Since it seems that despite the closeness of some contest, COP 24/7 finds it interesting that there was no forum set up to engage these candidates specifically to the state's LGBTQ community. Surely one would think that maybe any of the local community based groups would have been on this one especially in lieu of the marriage equality decision sitting in limbo and many of these candidates have openly advertise their "gun touting, Obama hating, and Christian values all the while espousing rhetoric of how they will represent all Arkansans. Really!?
For the record, Human Rights Campaign did a early AM e-blast citing their endorsement of embattled Sen. Mark Pryor, whom they state, "has voted for critical pro-equality legislation, including the Employment Non-Discrimination Act and repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." That may be so, but I don't recall Pryor making that case in any direct information or perhaps buying some advertising in the local LGBTQ newspaper to affirm his need for the communities votes. For that matter the only candidate to do so was City Director candidate, Kathy Webb.
Although this forum has been taken to task about calling out folks, but excuse me, if you don't say nothing, nothing most likely won't get done as is the case almost 90 percent of time in these parts. COP 24/7 has emphasized the importance of the LGBTQ community working the "systems" that are suppose to be there in our best interest. So when we get this is up for thoughts. But for now, its all about "Turn Out to Vote." Check out
Preparing for 2015 Open Enrollment
The Health Connector Division (AHCD) of the Arkansas Insurance Department and Arkansas Navigator Coalition will be conducting informative meetings to all Agents/brokers, Navigators, IPA Guides and CACs throughout the seven rating areas of Arkansas to prepare and share ideas for the upcoming 2015 open enrollment period. COP 24/7 will update with specific organizations as they are confirmed that will be available locally to assist those seeking enrollment or information.
Topics will include 2015 plans & rates for FFM & Private Option (PO), Assister licensing and relicensing issues, Marketplace plans and PO plans enrollment/renewal, consent forms, SHOP updates, Arkansas Health Insurance Marketplace progress and other issues. 
The presenters will be Bruce Donaldson from AHCD and Jonathan Sheets & David Armistead Wright from Arkansas Navigators Coalition.  The dates, locations are below.  All times are from 9am-12pm
11/5/14- Conway Regional Health Systems
2302 College Avenue
Conway, AR 72034
Hospital Auditorium
11/6/14- Southern Arkansas University
100 E University Street
Magnolia, AR 71753
Reynolds Center Grand Hall A and B
11/10/14- St. Bernard’s Healthcare
225 East Jackson Street
Jonesboro, AR 72401
Main Auditorium
11/11/14- North Arkansas College
1515 Pioneer Drive
Harrison, AR 72601
Durand B
11/12/14- Marvin L Vinson Multi Purpose Building
1116 W Oakland Street
Clarksville, AR 72830
Small Exhibit Room
11/13/14- Jefferson Regional Hospital
1600 W 40th Avenue
Pine Bluff, AR 71603
Class Rooms J & R
11/14/14- Arlington Hotel
239 Central Avenue
Hot Springs, AR 71901
Conference Room B


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