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  • Anthony Martinez is 84-years-old and suffering from renal failure, as well as other serious medical conditions including dementia. He is currently incarcerated in the Sterling Correctional Facility, site of one of Colorado’s largest COVID-19 outbreaks with almost 600 active COVID-19 cases. He and his family are understandably terrified that he will catch the virus and die.

    In the midst of this public health crisis, incarcerated people as vulnerable as Anthony, could and should be immediately released to safely live out their remaining years with family.

    Read more about Anthony Martinez and other at-risk incarcerated people. 

  • Ronald Johnson is pre-diabetic, suffers from asthma and high blood pressure, and regularly uses an inhaler to breathe. His age and respiratory ailments put him at risk of serious illness and death if he contracts COVID-19. With over hundreds of active cases in Colorado’s prisons, his family fears he will not make it out alive. His daughter, Amber, says, “In prison, he can’t protect himself and he can’t social distance. My deep fear is that my dad will die in prison. That is an awful, traumatic reality to consider. My chest is tight just thinking about how quickly it spreads and how vulnerable he is.”

    Governor Hickenlooper shortened his sentence following testimony from family, friends and correctional officers advocating for his early release. Yet, he is still eight years away from parole. While he remains in prison, COVID-19 continues to spread. Ronald’s three siblings, four children and four grandchildren are desperate for his release.

    Read more about Ronald Johnson and other at-risk incarcerated people.

  • Tuesday Olson knew her pregnancy was in trouble and tried to access hospital care as soon as possible. But there was a problem: she was in jail. This is her story.
  • It’s time to end the death penalty in Colorado. Family members who lost loved ones to murder speak out against an unjust and broken system.

ACLU Statement on Durango’s Anti-Homeless “Sit-Lie” Ordinance

DENVER – Late last night, the Durango City Council approved a “sit-lie” ordinance that prohibits people from sitting or lying down on downtown sidewalks, curbs and other public areas.

ACLU of Colorado Executive Director Nathan Woodliff-Stanley issued the following statement:

“As cost of living has spiked across the state and affordable housing has dwindled, we have seen all sorts of attempts to criminalize homelessness and poverty. So-called “sit-lie” ordinances are among the most absurd and indefensible.

“Sitting is not a crime. It is not a threat to public safety. Of course, the Durango ordinance has nothing to do with public safety. It is intended to give police another tool to harass and remove people from downtown who appear to be homeless.

“People do not lose their right to exist in a public place when they lose a home.

“We firmly believe that laws that directly criminalize existence or indirectly impede the free speech right to peacefully ask for charity in public spaces deserve to be challenged both in the courts and in the court of public opinion.”



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