Colorado Edition: Reaching Out

Oct 7, 2019

Today on Colorado Edition: we'll discuss the state of Colorado's new Recovery Cards Project. Plus, whether the state's Office of Saving People Money on Healthcare is doing what it set out to do. We'll also learn about why more Coloradans are "doubling up" to find housing. And we'll talk with former ambassador Samantha Power about her new book.

News Of The Day:

  • Catholic Priest Abuse - People who were abused by Catholic priests in Colorado are now eligible to receive unlimited payouts under a compensation program funded by the church. The fund's administrators say they were sending out packets to 65 people who previously came forward to report abuse. Anyone who hasn't contacted the diocese of Colorado Springs, Denver and Pueblo to report abuse has until Nov. 30 to contact the Colorado Independent Reconciliation and Reparations Program. There are no fees to participate, and victims do not need to retain a lawyer.
     
  • Referee Shortage - Fall high school sports are underway and Colorado athletic organizations are scrambling to find referees. The Greeley Tribune reports there is a statewide referee shortage affecting all sports. Fewer referees are signing up partly because of poor fan behavior, low pay and travel demands. Football, basketball and softball have seen the greatest drop in referees. The Colorado High School Activities Association recently approved raises for basketball and soccer officials, beginning this school year. 
     
  • Death of Leo Lucero - Flags remain at half-staff to honor a Colorado lawmaker known for championing diversity and education during his 14 years in the State House. Colorado Politics reports Leo Lucero passed away last week. A memorial service was held over the weekend. The Pueblo Democrat and former Marine was 91. 

One of the Recovery Cards by artist Tabitha Aaron.
Credit Courtesy of Colorado Department of Human Services

Recovery Cards

In September, the state of Colorado launched the Recovery Cards Project, as part of the "Lift the Label" opioid anti-stigma campaign.

Now only six out of 34 designs are left in stock. The state is currently ordering more.

We spoke with Elizabeth Owens, director of policy and communications for the Colorado Department of Human Services, about the initiative along with Tabitha Aaron, a Boulder-based artist, who is in recovery herself and designed some of these cards. 

Gov. Jared Polis speaks to reporters about the expected impact of a new reinsurance program lawmakers passed this year.
Credit Scott Franz / Capitol Coverage

Office Of Saving People Money On Healthcare

Gov. Jared Polis is getting praise and scorn for a creating two new government offices this year. Democrats call him a "mover shaker," while Republicans question the use of tax dollars to expand bureaucracy. 

KUNC's Scott Franz looks at one of the offices, to see if it is as innovative as Polis claims. 

More Coloradans 'Double Up' To Find Housing

Credit Jim Hill / KUNC

We have heard a lot about the struggle of finding affordable housing here in Colorado, and today we're going to bring you a look at a solution that more and more Coloradans are turning to. 

It's called "doubling up," and it means that more adults are living with other people to help pay for, and find, affordable housing in our state. Kevin Simpson reported on this trend for The Colorado Sun, and joins us to explain. 

Former Ambassador Reflects On Her Career

The cover of Samantha Power's new book, "The Education of an Idealist: A Memoir."

One hundred years ago, the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution granted women their right to vote. Over the next year, until August 2020, states including Colorado will commemorate the women's suffrage movement with community engagement, outreach, dialogue and educational events. 

History Colorado is leading the initiative in Colorado, which includes a speaker series called "Bold Women. Change History." Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power will speak as part of this series on Monday, Oct. 7.

KUNC's Colorado Edition reached her by phone to talk about the meaning of the anniversary, and the importance of women having a seat at the political table. 

MORE: Listen to the extended cut of this interview here.

Colorado Edition is made possible with support from our KUNC members. Thank you!

Our theme music was composed by Colorado musicians Briana Harris and Johnny Burroughs. Other music this week by Blue Dot Sessions:

  • "On Our Own Again"
  • "Horizon Liner" by The Pine Barrens
  • "Trivial Call" by Bayou Birds
  • "Longtime Rye" by Sunday at Slims
  • "Sayera" by El Baul

This episode is hosted by Erin O'Toole (@ErinOtoole1) and Lily Tyson. The web was edited by digital editor Jackie Hai. News director Catherine Welch and managing editor Brian Larson contributed to this episode.

KUNC's Colorado Edition is a daily news magazine taking an in-depth look at the issues and culture of Northern Colorado. It's available on our website, as well as on iTunesGoogle PlayStitcher, or wherever you get your podcasts. You can hear the show on KUNC's air, Monday through Thursday at 6:30 p.m.