FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Juan Ramiro Sarmiento
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Statement on Gov. Jared Polis’ State of the State Address
(Denver, CO) – Today, the Governor of Colorado, Jared Polis, delivered his State of the State address outlining his legislative priorities for the Centennial State. Governor Polis signaled his number one priority is combating the global pandemic and effects of the economic downturn. The state recovery package will focus on education, affordable health care, racial justice, transportation and infrastructure, and affordable housing.
In response, Kyra deGruy Kennedy, Rocky Mountain Region Director for Young Invincibles, issued the following statement:
“We commend Governor Jared Polis for his continued commitment to an equitable recovery that rightfully centers those most impacted, but also looks forward to investing in our future by way of education, racial justice, and affordable health care.
Young Coloradans are integral to the recovery and long-term prosperity of our state. We must ensure young people have the tools and resources to propel themselves and our communities toward a more equitable and just future. This recovery means we have to remove barriers in higher education, and Young Invincibles is charging ahead as we lead or support a host of legislative proposals in the Colorado General Assembly to increase equity by:
– Eliminating standardized testing as an eligibility criterion for admissions to a Colorado institution of higher education.
– Expanding occupational licensing to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, DACA, recipients.
– Ensuring general fund dollars go to higher education institutions serving students with the highest needs; Pell-eligible, first-generation, and students of color.
– Providing Emergency Assistance Grants for higher education students.
– Establishing protections for private student loan borrowers.
– Prohibiting transcript withholding practices as debt collection which hamper student career and economic prospects.
The long-term and robust recovery of the state also requires substantive action in health care to ensure access and affordability by:
– Expanding health care coverage for mental health, a critical service for Coloradans as they confront unprecedented adversity.
– Establishing a public health care option to provide greater access to all Coloradans.
– Ensuring prescription drug pricing transparency.
Governor Polis said it best, ‘No more bandaids for gaping wounds.’ The moment for action is now. Young Invincibles stands ready to work with the Governor, the Colorado General Assembly, and our coalition partners to forge a more just, equitable, and healthy Colorado.”