Leaders of Color Collaborative (LCC), a coalition of directors of color from Colorado progressive organizations, released the Racial Justice Ballot Guide Thursday.

The guide’s goal is to inform communities of color about the content and the impact of ballot measures on Colorado’s 2020 ballot.

“It’s time to change the narrative in this state and empower our communities,” said Tamra DeBrady, President of Colorado Black Women for Political Action (CBWPA), a group that helped lead on the creation of the guide. “Ballot guides are incredibly helpful to all voters, but typically in Colorado organizations that have released guides have been larger, not BIPOC led and without focus on Racial Justice. Our organizations have come together to provide guidance on a long and confusing ballot, directly from the experts who work on these issues each and every day.” 

The directors of color that make up LCC are leaders from COLOR Action Fund, CBWPA, Colorado Common Cause, Colorado Latino Forum (CLF), Colorado People’s Action (CPA), Colorado Rising, Padres y Jóvenes Unidos Action Fund (PJUAF), SEIU Local 105, United for a New Economy Action (UNE-A), and the Working Families Party (WFP), respectively.

The guide, which can be viewed here, gives a yes, no, or neutral recommendation on all 11 statewide ballot measures featured on the ballot and lists which of the member organizations oppose or support it. For example, for Prop. 118, Colorado’s proposal for paid family and medical leave, is supported by COLOR Action Fund, WFP, UNE-A, CPA, SEIU 105, CLF, and PJUAF.

Reasons behind the guide include a yearning for racial justice to be included in the conversation during an election cycle and the fallout from nationwide protests against police brutality, including in Colorado over the murder of Elijah McClain by Aurora Police last year.

But a primary reason is also to encourage communities of color to vote and to show support for community leaders and politicians of color, according to Dusti Gurule, Executive Director of COLOR Action Fund.

“‘Representation Matters’ is not a buzz phrase,” Gurule said. “True representation can look like electing leaders with deep roots within our communities and who take the time to deeply understand and centralize racial justice in their work. But it also looks like allied organizations coming together to speak up, speak out and empower our communities with quality information about the policies impacting our families.” 

LCC’s Racial Justice Ballot Guide is the first of its kind in Colorado. The Colorado Times Recorder compiled a list of other ballot guides from around the state published by progressive and conservative groups, as well as media outlets. That list can be found by clicking here.