On November 21, 2016, 13 Aurora police officers responded to a simple noise complaint at Alberto Torres’s home. As happens all too often, Aurora police officers escalated this minor issue into a brutal affair. They beat Mr. Torres solely because he delayed exiting his garage to ask his wife to interpret for him. With that beating, the lives of Mr. Torres and every member of his family were changed and he has yet to recover. ACLU of Colorado fought to obtain justice for Mr. Torres, and Aurora has now paid him $285,000. But money is not justice, and the brutality of the Aurora Police Department against people of color has continued unabated.
It doesn’t have to be this way.
Imagine, if instead of 13 officers being dispatched to Mr. Torres’s home for a noise complaint, the City of Aurora sent a civilian-led response team to check on his welfare and ask that he and his friends lower their sound, resulting in a non-violent solution to a minor issue?
Hope is a discipline. It’s a commitment that together, we can create a more perfect union. We won’t rest until we fulfill the promise of equal rights for ALL people in the United States.
Join us in our fight to fulfill this promise and move forward with hope by donating to the ACLU of Colorado. Your donation supports the ACLU’s strengths that make our work effective and collaborative.
Donate now at https://action.aclu.org/give/support-aclu-colorado
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.
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.
Category Archives: LGBTQ+ Equality
I’m Nine Years Old and Transgender
Everyone has a story. This is mine. What is gender? What does it mean to be a “girl” or a “boy”? For me, it was confusing because it was hard to be who I was with everyone around me calling me a boy, when deep down I felt like a girl. In Kindergarten I drew a picture of “Clark as a girl” and it was the first time I realized that I felt uncomfortable with being a boy. I didn’t know if I was right to be a girl or a boy or if I would get in trouble. We lived in Texas. I loved pink,.... | Read More
We Won, What’s Next?
June 16, 2020 By Julian Camera, Field Organizer Yesterday, Aimee Stephens, Don Zarda, and Gerald Bostock won. The LGBTQ+ community won. Hope, justice and humanity won. The Supreme Court ruled that it was against the law to fire our clients — fire anyone — for being LGBTQ+. This landmark victory was the result of decades of work by LGBTQ+ people fighting for the right to exist. It belongs to Aimee, Don, and Gerald, and innumerable individuals who spoke up and spoke out against discrimination. To.... | Read More
ACLU Settles Case: Colorado Company Can No Longer Discriminate Against Transgender Individuals
DENVER – The American Civil Liberties Union and the American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado announced a settlement this morning on behalf of Dashir Moore, a transgender man who was denied healthcare coverage for treatment for gender dysphoria by his former employer. Mr. Moore filed a charge of discrimination against the company because its health care plan categorically excluded coverage for anything related to gender transition, leaving Mr. Moore on the hook for a $30,000 surgery. The company.... | Read More
Victories Under The Dome
We had an ambitious legislative agenda entering into the 2019 session and are happy to announce a series of successes. First, we championed legislation that will fund for the first time in our state's history, comprehensive sex education for schools seeking to adopt such a curriculum. We were able to champion legislation that will bring some relief to our immigrant friends and neighbors and advanced legislation that will reform aspects of our cruel bail system. You made this happen and we thank you.... | Read More
ACLU: Colorado company denied health care coverage to transgender man
February 11, 2019 ACLU: Colorado company denied health care coverage to transgender man DENVER – The American Civil Liberties Union and the American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado filed a discrimination charge against InnoSource Inc. today on behalf of Dashir Moore, a 32-year-old transgender man who was denied health care coverage for treatment of gender dysphoria and subsequent transition-related care. Insurance carve-outs for transition-related care are illegal, yet two days after his.... | Read More
ACLU Files Brief at Supreme Court Arguing That Businesses Open to Public Cannot Discriminate Against Customers
WASHINGTON — The American Civil Liberties Union today filed its brief in the Supreme Court in a case in which a Colorado bakery refused to serve a same-sex couple seeking a cake for their wedding reception. The case, Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, will be heard at the Supreme Court on December 5th. The Colorado courts found that the bakery violated Colorado’s anti-discrimination law by refusing to serve Charlie Craig and David Mullins when they walked into.... | Read More
Supreme Court Will Hear Masterpiece Cakeshop Discrimination Case
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court today announced it will review a decision from the Colorado Court of Appeals that found that a cake shop discriminated against a same-sex couple by refusing to sell them a wedding cake. In 2012, Colorado residents David Mullins and Charlie Craig visited Masterpiece Cakeshop to order a wedding cake. Mullins and Craig planned to marry in Massachusetts and then celebrate with family and friends back home. Masterpiece owner Jack Phillips informed the couple that,.... | Read More
Colorado Supreme Court Refuses to Hear Case of Bakery That Turned Away Gay Couple
DENVER – The Colorado State Supreme Court today decided to let stand an appellate court ruling that Masterpiece Cakeshop violated Colorado’s anti-discrimination law when it refused to sell a same-sex couple a cake for their wedding reception. “The highest court in Colorado today affirmed that no one should be turned away from a public-facing business because of who they are or who they love,” said Ria Tabacco Mar, staff attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union’s LGBT Project,.... | Read More
Masterpiece Cakeshop Violated Civil Rights Law by Turning Away Gay Couple, Court Rules
8/13/2015 DENVER – In a unanimous decision issued this morning, the Colorado Court of Appeals ruled that a Lakewood Bakery unlawfully discriminated against David Mullins and Charlie Craig by refusing to sell them a cake for their wedding reception. The ruling affirms a finding in May 2014 from the Colorado Civil Rights Commission that Masterpiece Cakeshop’s policy of turning away same-sex couples violates Colorado’s Anti-Discrimination Act. “Today is a proud day for equality and for.... | Read More
State Appeals Court Hears Arguments in Case of Gay Couple Discriminated Against by Bakery
7/7/15 DENVER – The Colorado Court of Appeals heard oral arguments today in a discrimination case brought by a same-sex couple against a cake shop that refused to sell them a cake for their wedding reception. In 2012, Colorado residents David Mullins and Charlie Craig visited Masterpiece Cakeshop to order a wedding cake. Mullins and Craig planned to marry in Massachusetts and then celebrate with family and friends back home. Masterpiece owner Jack Phillips informed the couple that, because.... | Read More
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