Joey BunchJoey BunchNovember 9, 20172min218
The race to succeed Rep. Pete Lee in House District 18 in Colorado Springs next year got a little more crowded when former Manitou Springs Mayor Marc Snyder signed up for the race last week. Lee is running in Senate District 11 to succeed Mike Merrifield, a former Manitou Springs city councilman who is retiring […]

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Joey BunchJoey BunchNovember 6, 20174min4183

Rivalry-free bipartisanship was a feature of the #MeToo Leadership Rally Sunday afternoon on the steps of the state Capitol.

Rep. Faith Winter, D-Westminster, and Sen. Beth Martinez Humenik, R-Thornton, were among the speakers who joined with advocacy groups to draw attention to sexual harassment and physical assault.

Winter is challenging Martinez Humenik in the Senate District 24 race next year. (First, she will meet Thornton City Councilman Adam Matkowsky in the Democratic primary.)

Winter told Colorado Politics Monday that some issues rise above partisan politics.

“I was proud to stand with my rival for the most competitive Senate seat in the state, Beth Martinez Humenick, to bring much needed attention to #MeToo movement,” she said in an e-mail. “Sexual assault and harassment is blind to politics and blind to economic status. We are all impacted by #MeToo. We all need to take action to change our culture.”

Martinez Humenik said the renewed attention #MeToo, a 10-year-old initiative, is receiving is bringing out more victims and more awareness.

“This issue is not a partisan issue, it is a people issue,” she told Colorado Politics. “Sexual assault knows no socioeconomic boundaries, however, ethnic minorities are most often affected. Often individuals in households with domestic violence are also subject to sexual assault.”

She cited statistics that indicate 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men are victims of sexual violence at some point, while less than 10 percent are ever reported.

“Individuals with a lifetime of sexual assault are more likely to have chronic health issues. It is the responsibility of all Coloradans to create an environment in their homes, in our schools, in our faith-based community, in police departments, in medical offices and community organizations where survivors of sexual assault can report sexual assault or harassment,” Martinez Humenik said. “We must continue to inform children, teenagers, adults, and the disabled community members, that it is safe to tell. It is very important to work together to make sure that the stigma, the shame, the fear of telling someone else about a sexual assault or a sexual harassment incident that has occurred is ok, that it must be reported to prevent it from happening to others.

“The fear and stigma of reporting a sexual assault trauma or experiencing sexual harassment must end. There are many organizations and resources available to help victims work through their fear, PTSD or other triggers that cause victims distrust and to struggle on a daily basis as a result of experiencing sexual assault. Every person is important and each individual has a voice. I encourage women and men who are victims to speak up, use your voice so the perpetrators of this violence can be stopped. Blaming victims for their assault will not end sexual assault, however, the behavior of the offenders must and will continue to be addressed in Colorado for the safety and well being of all of our citizens.”


Joey BunchJoey BunchNovember 4, 201710min2280


Joey BunchJoey BunchOctober 27, 20172min1050

This week Rep. Jessie Danielson, D-Wheat Ridge, was named the legislator of the year by the Developmental Disabilities Resource Center at an event in Lakewood, the House Democratic Press Office said.

The center advocates for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families.

“I’m grateful for the recognition but even more grateful for the DDRC’s work to expand opportunities for people with disabilities in all areas of Colorado society,” Danielson said in a statement.

In the last session, she sponsored a new law during the 2017 legislative session to protect vulnerable adults from financial exploitation.

In the last session, she sponsored House Bill 1253, which protest at-risk adults from financial exploitation and scams.

Democrats passed the bill out of the House on a party-line vote and the Senate passed it 27-7, before the governor signed the extra protections into law in May.

Danielson is the House speaker pro tempore and vice chair of the House Public Health Care and Human Services Committee.

She was a talked-about option as a Democratic candidate for Congress this year, but in May told Colorado Politics she would run for the state Senate seat being vacated by Cheri Jahn, D-Wheat Ridge, next year. Jahn is term-limited.