October 18, 2022
Trump Attacks Colorado Republican Senate Candidate Joe O’Dea
Former president Donald Trump attacked Colorado Republican Senate candidate Joe O’Dea on Monday after O’Dea told CNN he would “actively campaign against” Trump in the 2024 presidential race.
During his campaign, O’Dea has differentiated himself from trump’s MAGA party. On his social app Truth Social Trump wrote about O’Dea, “This RINO character in the Great State of Colorado … who is having a good old time saying that he wants to ‘distance’ himself from President Trump and other slightly nasty things.” RINO refers to republican in name only.
O’Dea responded in a statement saying that “President Trump is entitled to his opinion, but I’m my own man, and I’ll call it as I see it,”
Dawson School Teacher Creates Refugee Simulation
The Daily Camera reports that students at the private K-12 Dawson School in Lafayette are ostensibly learning about the dangers faced by Syrian refugees through a simulation program.
Dawson geography teacher Craig Angus told the Boulder Daily Camera that the simulations create experiences similar to what refugees go through, to get to a better place to live. The simulation involves sending students through an obstacle course on the private school’s climbing structures and giving them pretend currency to bribe border agents.
How the course teaches about other aspects of the refugee experience – like forced family separation, navigating the legal system without court appointed assistance and prolonged detention without criminal conviction – is unclear.
RMAIN Decries Latest Death in Aurora Facility
The Rocky Mountain Immigrant Advocacy Network is condemning the death of another detainee held at the for profit immigration detention facility in Aurora.
The immigrant advocacy organization identified the deceased man as 39 year-old Melvin Ariel Calero Mendoza, a Nicaraguan asylum seeker who fled his home country due to fear of persecution and death. Doctors at the University of Colorado Hospital in Aurora pronounced Calero Mendoza dead Thursday.
Mendoza had been in U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody for six months. Unlike U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents, detainees within the immigration system do not have a right to court-appointed counsel or visitations.
ICE has not identified the cause of death, but did mention an immigration judge had denied the man’s asylum request earlier this month.
CU Boulder Expands Parental Leave
The University of Colorado Boulder announced Monday that they would expand their paid parental leave policy. Staff previously qualified after a year of working for the university. As of October 1, staff can qualify as soon as they are hired. They have also extended benefits to full and part time employees, faculty and specialty staff.
Pat O’Rourke, chief operating officer at CU Boulder, said to the Daily Camera that “What we recognized is that we had a one-year eligibility period for staff, and that was kind of (inequitable) because somebody who joined as a faculty member would be eligible for that leave upon hiring and that a staff member was not getting the same eligibility for the benefit.”
Colorado Environmental Groups Want Oil and Gas Phase Out
The new campaign, #FrackingFuelstheFlames, is led by the grassroots, volunteer-led coalition Safe & Healthy Colorado. The new campaign puts the light on the role of oil and gas fracking in fueling the flames of wildfires and other impacts of the climate crisis on our communities. Safe & Healthy Colorado is demanding a just transition and phase out of new oil and gas fracking permits by 2030, and has launched an open letter calling for a managed economic transition away from oil and gas production with an emphasis on protecting workers and communities.
They are urging for stronger climate-related action from Governor Jared Polis on policy issues such as declaring a climate emergency and moving state regulatory agencies to ensure greenhouse gas emissions reduction climate goals are reached.
According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s most recent assessment from last year, there is “high confidence” that human-influenced rising temperatures are a direct cause of the extension of the wildfire season, increased drought, and decreased precipitation in the southwest United States.