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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.

Lawmakers Choose Politics over People, Vote Again to Defund Driver’s License Law

January 23, 2015

DENVER – Members of the Joint Budget Committee of the Colorado legislature voted today for the second time this week to block funding for implementation of the Colorado Road and Safety Act.  Based on these votes, the Department of Revenue will not be allowed to access thousands of dollars in fees that have been collected through the law, which allows immigrant Coloradans to access driver’s licenses.

Statement of ACLU of Colorado Public Policy Director Denise Maes:

“The American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado is deeply disappointed by the vote of the Joint Budget Committee to essentially defund SB-251, a law passed in 2013 by the full legislature that allows immigrant Coloradans to access driver’s licenses.

“This vote was not about protecting taxpayer dollars. The funds at issue are fees that were fully generated by the driver’s license program.  The members of the committee who blocked those funds chose politics over people, and in doing so, voted to make our roads and our communities less safe.

“We strongly encourage those lawmakers to reconsider and to allow the Department of Revenue to spend the funds it collected, just as the legislature intended when it passed the law.  Rather than playing politics, lawmakers should be working to expand access to this program, which has the potential to benefit thousands of men, women, and families.”



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