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Once they leave foster care, these most troubled youths often have no reliable adults to advise them or provide emotional support, said Gary Stangler, director of the Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative.
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Cancer and Kids: Is Medical Marijuana the Answer?
Sierra Riddle hands a vape pen to her son, 7-year-old Landon Riddle, on July 10. Landon was diagnosed with an aggressive form of leukemia as a toddler and became the youngest patient in the United States to receive a medical marijuana card.
When Sierra Riddle stormed into the conference room at Denver's child protective services office, the director of the agency was seated there, along with her son's team of doctors, top administrators from the Children's Hospital Colorado oncology department and lawyers. She recalls looking one of the physicians in the eye, defiant. "I'm done with this shit," she remembers saying. "I'm done with you guys bullying us."
July 28, 2017
Concerned parents seek to change wording of Colorado's non-medical vaccine exemption form
School bells are ringing again across Colorado. As kids head back to school, some parents, who opt not to vaccinate their children, are pushing back against some of the wording in the state's new non-medical immunization exemption form.
That form reads in part: Failure to follow the advice of a physician, registered nurse, physician's assistant or public health official who has recommended vaccines may endanger my child's/my health or life and others who come into contact with my child/me. State Senator Kevin Lundberg, Chair of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee says, "That (phrasing) amounts to compelled speech." He said the state has no business trying to force parents to agree to something that they don't believe is true.
September 10, 2016
Boulder Valley schools still hot spot for low vaccination rates
Chalkbeat Colorado, which recently created a database of vaccination rates for schools in the state's 30 largest districts, found that the Boulder Valley School District remains a hot spot for the anti-vaccination movement.
According to Chalkbeat's analysis, more than half of the 15 schools with the highest rates of students exempt from vaccinations are in Boulder Valley. Colorado kindergartners also had the lowest vaccination rates for measles, mumps and rubella in the country - 81.7 percent - in the 2013-14 school year, according to federal data.
August 15, 2016
Pot-in-schools debate returns to Colorado
A new Colorado law allowing medical marijuana use at public schools is getting a second look Monday in a House committee. The current law allows students who need medical marijuana to use edible pot at public schools.
Medical marijuana has been legal in some states for two decades. But school districts and lawmakers nationwide are only now starting to grapple with thorny issues about student use of a drug still illegal under federal law. Colorado is one of three states where medical marijuana is legal that has any rules for use in schools, according to the pro-legalization Marijuana Policy Project.
April 11, 2016
Former DHS caseworker faces felony charges after infant's death investigation
Former Department of Human Services caseworker, Rotchana Madera, charged with multiples felonies in fatal child abuse case.
Natalee was admitted to the hospital on July 27, 2014 with skull fractures, and died four days later. Her mother, Kelsy Newell-Skinner, was charged in her death. Madera resigned from DHS shortly after Natalee was hospitalized.
January 31, 2016
"I'd rather be illegally alive than legally dead" - Teen Becomes a 'Criminal' and Beats His Crohn's
A Colorado teenager named Coltyn Turner just celebrated the 22nd month of his debilitating Crohn's Disease being in remission, after beginning cannabis oil treatment.
The Turner family was forced to move to Colorado, from Illinois, in an effort to allow Coltyn to use his medication without fear of being considered a criminal and thrown in a cage, although the young man has been fearless in his resolve.
January 28, 2016
Colorado Marijuana Users Legally Challenge Grower Over Pesticide
A Denver marijuana grower is the target of the first product liability lawsuit brought by consumers since Colorado became the first state to allow recreational pot use.
The lawsuit against LivWell Co., which sells the marijuana it grows for both medical and recreational use through nine retail stores, was brought by two customers who claim the company inappropriately used Eagle 20 on its plants. Filed Monday, Oct. 5, 2015, the lawsuit follows recent reports about how Colorado marijuana growers have used some potent pesticides to control the spider mites and powdery mildew that come with growing pot indoors in one climate-controlled warehouse after another.
October 6, 2015
Doctors cover up vaccine damage after killing infant with 8 simultaneous vaccinations
It must have been shame that drove doctors at a California hospital to hide the body of an infant who had suddenly died after receiving eight simultaneous vaccinations. The parents were never allowed to see the body of their son before he was cremated.
Even after a year and four months had gone by, the official autopsy had not been revealed. Their son, Matthew, had been given DTaP, IPV, Hib, PCV, Hep B and Hep A in three shots, one in the right arm and two in the left leg, just a day before his sudden death.
May 11, 2015
Baby Taken from Parents After Father Admitted to "Using Marijuana" is Murdered in Foster Care | The Free Thought Project
Grand Junction, CO - Angel Lane Place, an 11-month-old baby girl has died as a result of injuries received while under the care of state-approved foster parents.
A 20-year-old woman from Grand Junction is facing charges in the death of Angel. The Grand Junction Police Department said Sydney Danielle White told investigators she "accidentally dropped" the infant, Angel Lane Place, on the floor September 12, and then on September 15, grabbed her by the neck and shook her.
September 26, 2014
Lawsuit: After Abortion, Planned Parenthood Returns 13 Year-Old To Father Who Sexually Abused Her
A Colorado mother is suing Rocky Mountain Planned Parenthood for giving her 13 year old a secret abortion and sending her back with the man who was sexually abusing her, following the abortion procedure in 2012.
Cary Smith, the girl's mother, has filed a lawsuit accusing Planned Parenthood of failing to report suspected child abuse to authorities even though the workers at the clinic were mandatory reporters, and allowing the 13 year old girl's stepfather to continue abusing her in secret. The suit is for negligence, extreme and outrageous conduct, and negligent affliction of emotional distress.
July 18, 2014
Changing marijuana laws forcing judges, child protection services to re-examine endangerment
A Colorado man loses custody of his children after getting a medical marijuana card. The daughter of a Michigan couple growing legal medicinal pot is taken by child-protection authorities after an ex-husband says their plants endangered kids.
And police officers in New Jersey visit a home after a 9-year-old mentions his mother's hemp advocacy at school. While the cases were eventually decided in favor of the parents, the incidents underscore a growing dilemma: While a pot plant in the basement may not bring criminal charges in many states, the same plant can become a piece of evidence in child custody or abuse cases.
June 19, 2014
Parents, 6 Sons, Accused Of Sexually Abusing Girl For Nearly A Decade
The sheriff of a small county in northeast North Carolina says he is "disgusted" by the parents of six men who are accused of sexually abusing their sister for nearly a decade, at a private family compound.
"I blame the parents for this," Perquimans County Sheriff Eric Tilley told The Huffington Post on Tuesday. "It's your responsibility as a parent to teach [your children] right and wrong. When you see a child doing something that is totally wrong and you don't correct them, then the child thinks it's OK."
May 13, 2014
Child abuse prevention program launches in rural Colorado
Parenting coaches will visit at-risk families under a new program announced Monday aimed at preventing child abuse and neglect throughout Colorado.
Families referred to child protective services for suspected abuse or neglect can participate in the program, called SafeCare. Doctors, public health officials and schools also can refer families to the program, which is voluntary. In its first year, the program could work with as many as 600 families in 15 rural counties, the Southern Ute and Ute Mountain tribes. Once the program is implemented in all 64 counties it could help as many as 1,800 families per year, Bicha said.
September 30, 2013
Man sentenced for illegal mountain lion hunts
A man who helped lead illegal hunts of mountain lions in western Colorado and Utah has been sentenced to three years of probation.
Marvin Ellis of Grand Junction also was ordered by U.S. District Judge Philip Brimmer to serve six months of home detention and pay a $3,000 fine stemming from his 2012 guilty plea to conspiracy to violate a federal law that bans moving animals across state lines for such hunts.
June 4, 2013
Study: Number of frogs, toads declining at alarming rate
Frogs, toads and other amphibians are vanishing so fast nationwide that if the decline continues at the same rate, they'll be gone from half their current habitats in 20 years, a federal study has found.
U.S. Geological Survey officials on Wednesday unveiled the study, done over a decade, on 48 species at 34 sites from California to Colorado high-country to Florida swamps. Federal scientists found that the declines are more widespread and severe than previously thought and that amphibian populations are disappearing at an overall rate of 3.7 percent each year.
May 23, 2013
Judge says Human Services 'directly responsible' for child's death during Donald Jean Scarlett's sentencing
ADAMS COUNTY - An Adams County Judge says the county's Human Services are to blame for the death of 22-month-old Michael Harris, who died February of 2011 from injuries inflicted by his mother's boyfriend.
Judge Chris Melonakis said, "[Adams County Human Services] are directly responsible for the death of the child. Frankly somebody should be taking them in front of the grand jury." Judge Melonakis added, "Michael Harris never had a chance in life. As a system, we had an obligation to give him a chance in life. It's appalling the level of neglect from the state. It transcends the level of human decency."
April 12, 2013
'Mamma Chia Entrepreneur of the Year Award' to be Presented at the Slow Money National Gathering in Boulder
Mamma Chia, the organic food and beverage company that originated the chia beverage category, announces the Mamma Chia Entrepreneur of the Year Award to be presented at the fourth annual Slow Money National Gathering in Boulder, Colorado on April 30.
The $50,000 award, funded by a $25,000 donation from Mamma Chia as part of the company's 1% For the Planet contribution, will be matched by Slow Money's Soil Trust, a non-profit online funding platform launched in 2012. The award will be given to a small food enterprise at the gathering's Entrepreneur Showcase that demonstrates outstanding leadership in the local food movement and exemplifies the spirit of the Slow Money Principles.
April 10, 2013
Whole Foods Finally Has a Real Competitor
Frankly, I seldom shop WFM. The main reason is because there's a locally owned and operated business in my community that sells only natural and organic food and other supplies.
NGVC was built on the premise that consumers should have access to affordable, high-quality foods and dietary supplements, with nutritional guidance to help them support their own health. The family-run store has grown into a successful national chain with locations across Colorado, Texas, Utah, Wyoming, Oklahoma, Missouri, New Mexico, Montana, Kansas, Idaho, Nebraska, Arizona and Oregon. Altogether, the company has 1,800 employees.
April 8, 2013
Colorado Sheriff Responds To Obama's Visit
President Obama visited Denver on April 3, 2013 to push his excessive gun legislation. Not one sheriff in the state of Colorado was included in the event.
The sheriffs of Colorado representing 62 counties were kept out of the event because their legislative needs were not useful to the president. Obama's purposeful shunning of the state sheriffs could not silence them. Listen as Sheriff Shayne Heap from Elbert County Colorado responds to the president's comments.
April 4, 2013
Columbine Father Speaks Out Against Gun Control And Blames Legislators
In 1999 Darrell Scott, of Littleton, Colorado, sat in front of Congress and delivered stirring testimony concerning the Columbine High School shootings that took the life of his daughter Rachel.
What congressional members heard that day was not what they expected, but it was most certainly what they and a nation struggling to comprehend and process the horror that had taken place, needed to hear. But how quickly we forget. The media barely paid attention to Mr. Scott's profound message which cut to the core of the deep seeded problems this nation faces with precision and clarity, leaving no room for interpretation or misunderstanding.
April 4, 2013
3 mountain lions caught on camera visiting Colo. home
KUSA - If you live in the mountains, you can't be surprised to see a mountain lion in the backyard - but three?
That's what John Vomastic's cameras spotted outside his house last weekend in the Crystal Park Community of Manitou Springs.
March 29, 2013
Organic foods, worth the expense?
Nancy Seckman, community readiness consultant at the Schriever Airman and Family Readiness Center, began buying organic meat and produce several years ago out of necessity. As her family members began experiencing food allergies and health problems.
Seckman and many health conscious people like her have to be dedicated fans because organic produce, beef and poultry products typically cost 50 to 100 percent more than traditional grocery store foods, according to Capt. Christine Cox, 21st Medical Squadron support flight commander. That said, is it worth it for Airmen, civilians and their families to spend the extra cash on things that carry an organic label? "It depends on what your goals are," said Cox, who is also a pharmacist and registered dietitian.
March 14, 2013
Ariel Clinical Services Reports Record Breaking Foster Numbers
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.- The number of Mesa County kids in the need of foster homes has soared to the highest level ever seen before.
Ariel Clinical Services is reporting record breaking foster referral numbers over the last two weeks. Officials say they doubled their previous foster referrals record of 14, this past February. "Just kind of blew up," said Rebecca Ely, foster care coordinator at Ariel Clinical Services. "We had 30 placements for the month of February so we have been just crazy with kids and every thing else."
March 6, 2013
Former Foster Children Meet With Lawmakers For Change
Several former foster children met with lawmakers on the Colorado Children's Caucus. They shared stories about how they succeeded in life despite challenges they faced in the foster care system.
"Some kids go to 10 schools in one year. How are you supposed to make emotional connections with people? How are you supposed to find someone that inspires you?" said Tori Black, a former foster child. "How are you supposed to make a connection with someone who will help you into your future and stay with you when you only know people for a couple months or weeks before you move on to the next location?"
March 5, 2013
Does foster care system contribute to child trafficking
Where do these kids come from? Drug and prostitute rings from foreign countries? Look no further than our state's foster care system. An estimated 500 homeless juveniles live on Denver's streets.
Nationally, Colorado has one of the highest removal rates of children from their families. Children run away from foster care in concerning numbers. (If your child runs away, the state will take custody because he's "beyond your control".) Kids who grow up in and age out of the system have lost everything, including their identity. This is the tragedy of government assuming the parental role.
February 28, 2013
Alert Kidjacked to Colorado CPS news!
Misconduct by Larimer CO Officials
An open letter to the Larimer County Sheriff's Department regarding the unreported abuse of their five-year-old child while living in a Fort Collins county foster home. Officials refuse to act...
June 24, 2012
Jacked Up: A Child's Best Interest
An open letter to Julie Shawley urging her to act in the best interest of a child she has been charged with protecting.
May 15, 2010