The Division of Aging and Adult Services serves as the focal point for all matters concerning older Arkansans; serves as an effective and visible advocate for the aging population; gives elderly citizens a choice of how and where they receive long term care services; plans, coordinates, funds and evaluates programs for senior adults.
The mission of the Division of Aging and Adult Services is to promote the health, safety, and independence of older Arkansans and adults with physical disabilities.
A growing nationwide awareness of the problems of the elderly--and the needs for services and assistance on their behalf--led to the passage of the Older Americans Act in 1965. This legislation created the Administration on Aging at the federal level and required that each state establish a state unit on aging to administer programs under the Act. Accordingly, Governor Orville Faubus established the Office on Aging in 1966 under the auspices of the Governor's office.
Since 1965, the Older Americans Act has been amended several times, each time expanding the role of state units on aging. Arkansas legislation also has changed the state unit's name, organization location, and its authority and funding responsibilities. The state unit was placed within the Department of Social Services in 1971. Act 228 of 1977 gave the agency divisional status and the responsibility for adult protective services was added by the General Assembly in 1979. Act 348 of 1985 created the Division of Aging and Adult Services (DAAS) within the reorganized Arkansas Department of Human Services.