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Beth McCann

As the Denver District Attorney, I see the intersection of mental health and criminal justice almost every day. We don't do a very good job of addressing those with mental health issues in our system. The jails have become warehouse for those with mental health issues. There are several things I have been doing and will continue to do if I am re-elected as Denver's District Attorney. 1) I meet monthly with my Mental Health Advisory Council to discuss these issues and educate myself about what is happening and where there are gaps 2) I support our robust co-responder ...

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Julie McCluskie

State Representative Julie McCluskie House District 61 - Delta, Gunnison, Lake, Pitkin and Summit Counties Access to affordable primary, oral and behavioral/mental  health care on the Western Slope has been a priority for me since elected in 2018. Given the high rate of suicide and substance abuse in Colorado’s high country, creating access to mental health services and reducing the stigma attached to mental illness are deeply important to me. During my first session in office, I championed HB29-1168: The State Innovation Waiver Reinsurance Program which brought ...

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Kerry Tipper

When I was elected in 2018, I wanted to ensure that every Coloradan had equitable and meaningful access to mental health care. That’s why I was proud to support bills like HB19-1269 (Mental Health Parity in Medicaid) and SB19-222 (Improving Access to Mental Health Services for Individuals at Risk of Institutionalization). Good mental health should not be treated as less important than good physical health, especially because the two are inseparable. You can’t have one without the other.  I also believe investments in mental health are good fiscal policy. They result ...

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Mike Weissman

Progress has been made in the last several decades to reduce the stigma of and increase access to treatment for mental health conditions, but we are still not at the level we should aspire to as one of the most prosperous nations in the world. We have been actively addressing mental health issues at the state legislature for the last several years by: passing mental health parity legislation; increasing access to counseling for youth and funding school-based counselors; increasing access to mental health services for peace officers; and most recently allocating several ...

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Edie Hooton

As long as I’ve been involved in civic matters, our mental health systems have generally been underfunded. I won’t say money is everything, but it has a strong correlation to staffing, services, and facilities - much of which is in short supply in underserved areas of Colorado. And with COVID-19 wreaking havoc on people and our economy, it seems as if demand for mental health services will only grow. I fully understand that access to mental health care is in the greatest interests of individuals, families, and society, and pledge to support legislation and budgetary ...

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Iman Jodeh

As the Democratic Nominee for HD41, I am dedicated to not only increasing mental health awareness, but to increase resources to mental health providers and Colorado residence in need of assistance. It is not lost upon me the we must also incorporate mental health professionals in law enforcement to decrease the risk of unjust use of force. In conjunction with that, I also believe that we must increase the presence of mental health professionals in schools.  I have a track record of supporting mental health bills in the Colorado State Legislature, and will vow to support ...

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Lindsey Daugherty

Mental health is a healthcare issue, and we need to work to stop the stigmatization of it. Schools should have more counselors who begin talking with children about mental health from a young age. With suicide rates at an all time high, this is a top priority for me. I’ve also seen how badly addiction can destroy someone’s life at a very personal level. My brother has suffered with addiction issues and my family have learned firsthand that the criminal justice system unfortunately prioritizes punishment, and not treatment. Fortunately for my brother, he has been able ...

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Karl Hanlon

Improving Colorado’s behavioral health care system is a big priority. I applaud efforts like those of the Behavioral Health Task Force that the legislature formed, as well as the legislation that has come out of the task force that is aimed at improving our system by increasing parity, ensuring accessibility, and lowering costs. Mental illness is not a crime, yet Coloradans who suffer from mental health crises, especially rural Coloradans, often still find themselves in jail cells for their illness. Moreover, in some counties on the Western Slope, local sheriff deputies ...

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Rachel Zenzinger

One of the main priorities I have for mental health in my community is to increase mental health parity with physical health. I was very supportive of HB18-1357 on Behavioral Health Care Ombudsperson Parity Reports, which required compliance with mental health parity laws and helped to increase access to care. But this was just a start. We must do a better job of integrating mental health into the full continuum of health where it is not seen differently than physical health. Right now, mental health costs are significantly higher, there is a lack of insurance coverage, ...

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David Ortiz

One of the most overlooked aspects of healthcare is mental healthcare. After surviving a catastrophic helicopter crash on deployment to Afghanistan, which left me paralyzed from the waist down, my most challenging days during rehab and recovery were not because of the physical injury but were caused by my mental health struggles. Having access to quality and affordable mental healthcare was critical to my recovery. A focal point of my work in the community is mental health. If elected, I would, first, increase the number of counselors in our schools. Second, I would ...

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