The Arkansas Commission on Child Abuse, Rape, and Domestic Violence (ACCARDV) was established in 1991 to enhance the coordinated approach in providing services to victims of child abuse, rape, and domestic violence.
Today the mission of ACCARDV is to enhance investigation, prosecution, treatment, support, and prevention in cases of child abuse, rape, human trafficking, and domestic violence. ACCARDV fulfills this mission through a collective impact approach consisting of two arms that work together to enhance victim services around the state. There are 25 Commissioners appointed by the Governor who serve as an advisory council and representatives of their communities and interests surrounding violence and abuse. The Commissioners work in the areas of focus or have experience with one or more of the issues. They convene quarterly to discuss the Commission goals, projects, and strategies to help the people of Arkansas.
ACCARDV staff carry out the projects and work-plans of the Commission by leading work groups, obtaining and administering funding, analyzing gaps and barriers, advocating for individuals, identifying needed access, looking for policy and funding solutions, and bringing together advocates and service providers to develop solutions. ACCARDV staff members work closely with other state level service-providers and collaborate with Commissioners to ensure that all areas of the continuum are being met across each of the Commission’s focus areas. ACCARDV is housed within the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) which allows for integration and the support of other departments and colleges.
The newest area of ACCARDV is the Child Welfare Ombudsman, a division which works to represent and investigate complaints impartially and advocate for improvements in policies and procedures surrounding the child welfare system. The mission of the Child Welfare Ombudsman office is to review an issue or complaint in any child welfare case or investigation in which a child or their family needs assistance from the Ombudsman; to bring resolution when possible; and to advocate for policies and procedures that will improve the child welfare system in Arkansas.