For Immediate ReleaseNovember 9, 2020
Contact: Olga Robak
Election Shows Coloradans Value Investing in State Services
Pueblo, CO – As election results from Colorado and across the country begin to be finalized, Colorado WINS Executive Director Hilary Glasgow issued the following statement:
“State employees are essential workers of every race and background who live in all 64 counties of our state. They keep our roads clear, our air and water clean, and ensure people can access the critical services the state provides. Their votes are as essential as the work they do and the people of Colorado have decided: they chose Joe Biden and Kamala Harris to bring us together and lead us out of the divisive, dark days of the Trump administration. This election shows that Coloradans can come together, across our differences, and elect leaders who will act in our interest and ensure the will of the people is the law of the land.
Although the outcome in our state seems clear, the election results are still being certified and we know that our democracy works only if we allow the time needed to count all the votes, without rushing to a quick and convenient election result. Coloradans have a rich history as voters and have always had confidence in our elections, because our system is non-partisan and works for everyone — Republicans, Democrats, and Independents. We are grateful that our state has a safe, fair, and transparent election process that ensures every Coloradan who casts a ballot has their vote counted.
Coloradans used the ballot box to tell our elected leaders that we need to invest in the essential services and policies we need to create a Colorado that works for all of us, not just the wealthy few. Together, state employees called and texted over 120,000 voters in Colorado and spoke with 30,000 Coloradans about the importance of voting for candidates who will support working people. Through phone banks, text banks, mail, and literature drops, state employees have done their part to ensure candidates who care about working people got elected.
By electing John Hickenlooper to the Senate, Coloradans spoke up about their need for a new COVID relief package that gives relief to the states and helps everyday Americans instead of corporations. And with the passage of Proposition 118, they also made clear that all working people need paid leave to care for themselves or family members because Coloradans must be able to put their families first.
These victories are important, but our work is not over. We will continue to mobilize and demand that our newly elected leaders take bold action to address the unprecedented crisis we are facing. No one is more concerned about preparedness and quality services than the public employees who are putting themselves at risk to serve our communities. But public employees’ response to the pandemic has been complicated by the fact that years of budget cuts have thinned staff and hampered planning.
In wake of COVID-19, the need for public services is way up, but funding is significantly down. The tragic events of this year have put essential services front and center in the lives of Coloradans, but the truth is we depended upon them long before the pandemic struck and will continue to need them after.
To create a state where Colorado families can thrive in the future, we need to make critical public services sustainable in the long run. That means our elected leaders must stand up for our communities instead of caving to corporate lobbyists. That means corporations and the wealthy must pay their fair share for public services instead of starving them by asking for corporate bailouts and tax cuts, as they have for the last several decades. Together, Coloradans need to demand immediate federal relief to ensure our state can get through the next few months, as well as long-term federal investments that support state and local services for the future.
If we come together, as we have in the past, we can overcome the coronavirus and address our country’s legacy of slavery, which has left deep cracks and divides in our system. Together, we have the opportunity to build the country our children and grandchildren need–one that births new ideas and solves big problems. One that leads with hope, not fear and brings all of us to the table to create even better, stronger communities. We can do that when we have the healthcare we need, when we have the best education because we’ve invested in it, and when all of our neighborhoods have the services to be safe and thriving. We can do that when we have a say at work and in our democracy. Without that, the best we can do is tread water.
People can create things that have never been imagined–better jobs, new technology and services–and answer our country’s call when we create a government for all of us, one that protects all workers and ensures all families are healthy, safe, and secure — no matter our race, our immigration status, our job, or where we live.