Posted inNews, Politics and Government

Advocates to push for overhaul of Colorado’s youth residential centers — and they’re looking to Florida for help

A group of child protection advocates including the state ombudsman and a lawmaker will push for a massive overhaul of Colorado’s residential centers for kids in foster care or with severe mental health issues.  They’ve set their sights on copying a Florida law that revamped the way centers in that state are evaluated to make […]

Posted inHealth, News

Colorado county leaders blast state officials over mental health, claim 69 foster kids are missing

The state system that treats children with severe mental health issues is so stretched that it’s become dangerous, Colorado’s county human services directors charged in a fiery letter to state officials. Previous efforts have failed to “shift the course of the emergency,” wrote the leaders of the Colorado Human Services Directors Association and Colorado Counties […]

Posted inColoradans, Health, News, Politics and Government

Youth mental health was front and center in Colorado’s legislative session. But the work is only a “down payment.”

Hospital emergency departments are flooded with children who’ve just attempted suicide. Kids in need of residential treatment for severe depression are sent out of state because Colorado’s beds are full. And suicide became the leading cause of death for youth in this state five years ago. So what are Colorado policymakers doing about it?  The […]

Posted inSun Investigation

Colorado may toughen probes into institutional child abuse claims following Colorado Sun/9News investigation

A state child welfare committee will consider changing the way allegations of institutional abuse are investigated at residential centers for troubled kids, following news reports about a chronic runaway problem that resulted in two deaths.  Two state lawmakers, meanwhile, are vowing to strengthen mental health treatment for children and compel the state child welfare division […]

Posted inHealth, News, Politics and Government

Colorado is on track to give teens three free therapy sessions to help them cope with coronavirus

Every Coloradan age 18 and younger would have access to a free mental health screening and as many as three free subsequent visits with a mental health professional under a new, bipartisan bill at the state Capitol aimed at helping kids deal with the effects of the coronavirus crisis. House Bill 1258 represents one of […]

Posted inCrime and Courts, News, Politics and Government

After infighting, Colorado lawmakers revive effort to give child sex assault survivors unlimited time to sue abusers

Colorado lawmakers are once again debating whether to give recent and future victims of child sexual assault unlimited time to sue their abusers after a similar effort failed last year because of infighting among proponents of the policy change.  Senate Bill 73 cleared its first hurdle on Wednesday, unanimously passing the Senate Health and Human […]

Posted inElection 2020, News, Politics and Government

8-hour, Republican-led hearing on Colorado’s election integrity ends without evidence of widespread fraud

There was no evidence of widespread voter fraud in Colorado presented during a day-long, legislative hearing held by Republicans Tuesday on the state’s election integrity. But there was plenty of bipartisan praise for Colorado’s voting systems and processes.  “We are the gold standard for voting in our country,” said El Paso County Clerk and Recorder […]

Posted inElection 2020, News, Politics and Government

Colorado’s GOP chairman trusts the state’s voting systems. Legislative Republicans still want to check it out.

Republicans in the legislature will hold an investigative hearing on the integrity of Colorado’s election processes and systems Tuesday despite a lack of evidence of widespread fraud that would have overturned any of the state’s 2020 results.  The meeting is also happening despite the fact that Colorado GOP Chairman Ken Buck has been working with […]

Posted inCrime and Courts, News, Politics and Government

Effort to give Colorado child sex assault survivors unlimited time to sue abusers is rejected

In a stunning reversal on Friday, a lead sponsor on a bill that would have given future child sexual assault victims in Colorado unlimited time to sue their abusers and those who allowed their abuse to happen asked that the measure be rejected.  Instead, state Sen. Julie Gonzales, a Denver Democrat, said she wants to […]

Posted inCOVID, Crime and Courts, Education, News, Politics and Government

Coronavirus is threatening school safety efforts prompted by STEM School Highlands Ranch shooting

Colorado lawmakers spent the months after the STEM School Highlands Ranch shooting last year trying to find policy avenues to improve school safety.  But now, a year after the attack that left one student, 18-year-old Kendrick Castillo, dead and several more wounded, the slate of measures they drafted to try to keep students and teachers […]