Black people have the highest opioid fatality rate among all other races and ethnicities in Arizona

PHOENIX – African Americans have the highest opioid fatality rate among all other races and ethnicities in Arizona. As recently as 2015, Blacks were less likely to overdose than other races or ethnicities. Now, due to a steep rise in overdose deaths, Black people have the highest overdose fatality rate, followed closely by Native Americans.

Scottsdale Recovery Center, where Justin Bronson is a peer support specialist, on April 11. (Photo by Jack Orleans/Cronkite News)

Clinics vow to continue providing abortions, but unsure for how much longer

PHOENIX - One day after the Arizona Supreme Court resurrected a law that makes it a felony to perform an abortion, clinics around the state said they will continue offering care even as they scramble to figure out how long they can do so.

Gov. Katie Hobbs signs law aimed at accountability for Arizona long-term care facilities

PHOENIX – HB 2764, which Gov. Katie Hobbs signed into law Monday, requires the Arizona Department of Health Services to establish stricter standards and oversight for assisted living facilities, particularly those that provide memory care.

Gov. Katie Hobbs, backed by supporters of HB 2764, signs the bill into law on April 8, 2024, in the Arizona State Capitol Executive Tower in Phoenix. (Photo by Analisa Valdez/Cronkite News)

Think tank estimates Arizona spends $1.1 billion annually for homelessness solutions

Think tank organization Common Sense Institute Arizona presented research, which estimates that Arizona spends $1.1 billion annually on homelessness solutions.

A Common Sense Institute report suggests that though most of the funding for homelessness solutions is dedicated to housing, there may be other areas to invest in as the unhoused population continues to grow. (Photo courtesy of St. Vincent de Paul)

Arizona advocates aim to break cycle of homelessness through ID accessibility

PHOENIX – The Homeless ID Project works to assist unhoused individuals in obtaining lost or stolen identification documents, making it possible for individuals to gain employment, secure housing or access essential services.

The Homeless ID Project aims to end homelessness through providing ID replacement services to eliminate barriers many unhoused individuals face to accessing housing, jobs and essential services. (Photo courtesy of the Homeless ID Project)

Governor’s office partners with RIP Medical Debt to forgive billions in medical debt for some Arizonans

PHOENIX — Katie Hobbs announced that federal American Rescue Plan Act funds will be used to pay off medical debt of Arizonans who meet special criteria.

The governor’s office is partnering with RIP Medical Debt, a nonprofit geared toward clearing personal medical debt. (Photo by Marnie Jordan/Cronkite News)

Public kept at bay as Israeli diplomat addresses joint legislative session

PHOENIX – The public was kept out of a joint session of the Arizona Legislature Wednesday where an Israeli diplomat said "Hamas must be eradicated" after an Oct. 7 attack sparked a war that has since killed thousands of civilians.

Arizona Legislature considers tougher animal cruelty laws after spike in cases

CHANDLER – Arizona SB 1047 aims to strengthen animal-cruelty laws following a spike in cruelty investigations and last year’s high-profile Chandler case. The bill aims to fortify protections for pets statewide.

‘My dad, he needed help’: Woman says her dead father deserved more from Nevada police

LAS VEGAS – In 2019, Roy Scott called 911 to report a break-in, but when Las Vegas police showed up, events snowballed into a physical confrontation, despite Scott telling officers he had paranoid schizophrenia.

California law enforcement agencies have hindered transparency efforts in use-of-force cases

PHOENIX – While California is considered a progressive state, local law enforcement conduct has been veiled by some of the strongest privacy protections in the country. Attempts at greater transparency are being stymied by police departments and unions.

Mental health problems and meth common in deaths in non-shooting police encounters in Nevada

An investigation by the Howard Center and AP found that people in Nevada who died during or after police encounters often had both histories of mental illness and meth in their systems at the time of their deaths.

How non-shooting deaths involving police slip through the cracks in Las Vegas

LAS VEGAS – At least 12 people died in Nevada from 2012 to 2021 during or after police encounters that did not involve a gun, according to an investigation by the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism at ASU and The Associated Press.