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.
22. Bonus Pod: Masterpiece Explained
https://soundcloud.com/thepurplestatereport/masterpiece-explained There were many questions following Monday's Supreme Court ruling of the Masterpiece Cakeshop case. Today ACLU of Colorado Staff Attorney Sara Neel explains how we got here, what the ruling means, and where we go from here. Call To Action: Congress: Pass The Equality Act Now https://www.aclu.org/Support-Equality-Act The Purple State Report is brought to you by the ACLU of Colorado. Our show was produced by Vanessa Michel,.... | Read More
Supreme Court Upholds Basic Principles of Nondiscrimination, Reverses Colorado Civil Rights Commission Decision
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court today reaffirmed the core principle that businesses open to the public must be open to all in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. The court did not accept arguments that would have turned back the clock on equality by making our basic civil rights protections unenforceable, but reversed this case based on concerns specific to the facts here. The American Civil Liberties Union argued the case on behalf of Charlie Craig and David Mullins, who.... | Read More
21. Inmigración: Conozca sus derechos
https://soundcloud.com/thepurplestatereport/inmigracion-conozca-sus-derechos Las acciones recientes de ICE y la Administración de Trump han generado preocupacion en la comunidad de inmigrantes de Colorado. Ahora es un buen momento para recordarles a todos que la Constitución y la Carta de Derechos protegen a "Nosotros la gente", no a "Nosotros los ciudadanos." Field Director Alejandra Garza y Staff Attorney Arash Jahanian presentan un programa especial sobre los.... | Read More
20. Immigration: Know Your Rights
https://soundcloud.com/thepurplestatereport/immigration-know-your-rights Recent actions by ICE and the Trump deportation machine have raised concerns in the Colorado immigrant community. Now is a good time to remind everyone that the Constitution and Bill of Rights protects “We the people,” not “We the citizens.” Field Director Alejandra Garza and Staff Attorney Arash Jahanian present a special know your rights discussion for immigrants and their families. We also have a bonus pod of.... | Read More
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.... | Read More
19. Immigrant Rights are Civil Rights
https://soundcloud.com/thepurplestatereport/immigrant-rights-are-civil-rights The Department of Justice has suspended funding for the Legal Orientation Program which provides essential legal information to people in immigration detention. Staff Attorney Arash Jahanian sits down with Mekela Goehring, executive director of the Rocky Mountain Immigrant Advocacy Network, to discuss the consequences of ending the program and the most important things immigration detainees and their families should.... | Read More