Attorney General Dustin McDaniel today announced the launch of the new consumer education and awareness initiative to equip Arkansans with the information they need to navigate the consumer marketplace and avoid scams and fraud.
The launch coincided with the start of National Consumer Protection Week, an annual observance that encourages to consumers to know their rights and be better-informed.
"As the state's chief consumer advocate, I have a responsibility to provide Arkansans with the tips and tools they need to make better decisions as consumers," McDaniel said. "Our new website is a user-friendly resource that offers valuable information about common consumer issues. And, in those instances where a consumer needs someone to mediate on his or her behalf, then the Arkansas consumer should know that we've got your back."
At GotYourBackArkansas.org, consumers will find important tips and advice prepared by the experienced investigators and attorneys in the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division. The site's content is separated into nine categories, allowing consumers to easily locate information that addresses their concerns.
Arkansans may also read the Attorney General's weekly consumer alerts at GotYourBackArkansas.org, as well as file consumer complaints. The Consumer Protection Division works every day to help Arkansans who have fallen victim to scams or have complications resulting from legitimate business dealings. Last year, the Consumer Protection Division investigated more than 7,300 complaints from consumers.
"When consumers call upon our office, it is our goal to help them reach positive resolutions, and we most often do," McDaniel said. "We will help consumers who need to get their money back as a result of a scam or fraud, and we often assist when consumers just need a contractor to finish their promised job. Most often, our experienced investigators and attorneys will help reach a resolution without any need for legal action."
In 2011, the Consumer Protection Division recovered approximately $1.6 million for consumers who requested that the Attorney General intervene on their behalf. Since 2007, the Division has helped consumers recover more than $8.5 million, all through mediation. In addition, the Division has resolved hundreds of other complaints without any related financial recoveries.
McDaniel said the launch of "Got Your Back, Arkansas," will raise awareness of the Consumer Protection Division and its benefits to all Arkansas consumers. The GotYourBackArkansas.org website and the work of the Division will be promoted in television, radio and newspaper announcements that started around the State today.