As a Civil Libertarian, I struggle with Colorado’s Aid In Dying Ballot Initiative
The ACLU of Colorado fully supports Prop. 106, but encourages all voters to carefully consider the concerns of the disability community. I have been a staff attorney at the ACLU of Colorado for over six years and have wanted this job since I was a teenager. The ACLU – and its unending fight to protect civil liberties – is in my blood. Until just a few years ago, I did not question the basic premise, long supported by the ACLU, that terminally ill individuals have a constitutional and.... | Read More
Take Out Slavery – Vote YES on Amendment T
Did you know that the Colorado Constitution still allows legal slavery, and that Coloradans can do something about it this fall? Colorado’s language parallels an exception written into the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, banning slavery and involuntary servitude “except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted.” When a group of faith and community leaders began a campaign last spring to eliminate the exception allowing slavery, many legislators.... | Read More
Violence at Spring Creek: It’s not the kids, it’s the culture
(This column was published in the Colorado Springs Gazette on 9/28/16) In a recent Gazette article, it was reported that Spring Creek Correctional Facility is again erupting with assaults and riots, leaving youths and staff frightfully unsafe. After more than two years of hearing these kinds of reports from Spring Creek, it has become increasingly clear that the facility is plagued by an unforgiving and punitive culture that breeds violence and chaos. Staff now attribute the source of the violence.... | Read More
Darsean Kelly Knew His Rights. He Got Tased Anyway.
Police in Aurora, Colorado, got a call about a man pulling a gun on a kid. They had no description of the suspect. On their way to the scene, they stopped two Black men walking down the sidewalk. Darsean Kelley, one of the men, followed the officers’ orders to hold his hands above his head and turn around. His repeated requests for an explanation as to why they had been detained went unanswered. Even though it was clear he had no weapons and he was no threat to the officers, Darsean was tased.... | Read More
Protect Freedom on the 16th Street Mall
This column was originally published on 7/29/16 in the Denver Business Journal. In any discussion of improving perceptions of the 16th Street Mall, it is essential to remember that the Mall is a public space, and therefore must be open to all segments of the public. Any attempt to drive away some people because of how they look or how much money they have is an unacceptable abuse of individual freedom and civil liberties. It is also important to remember that for the most part, the 16th Street.... | Read More
Which Way Did Colorado Legislators Vote on Civil Liberties in 2016?
As we do after every legislative session, we prepared a legislative scorecard so you, our members and supporters, can see where each legislator stands on civil liberties issues. View the 2016 ACLU of Colorado Legislative Scorecard. This year, we picked six bills to score on the scorecard. The ACLU was of course involved in many other legislative initiatives, but these six represent a cross section of civil liberties issues we work on – mass incarceration, economic justice, solitary confinement.... | Read More
Our membership has quadrupled in the last six months, making it possible to do more than ever to protect civil rights and civil liberties in Colorado. Thank you to all our new members, supporters, and donors, and the ones who’ve been with us for years.
Leisel Kemp, whose brother Jason was killed by CSP after they entered his home without a warrant, spoke at the 2013 Bill of Rights Dinner about the ACLU’s legal advocacy on behalf of her family.
Out of Sight, Out of Mind is an original short film from the ACLU of Colorado about a man who has spent 17 years in solitary confinement and now suffers from debilitating mental illness.