Tag: Health care

Help keep Colorado a free state

Get up, get out and sign the petition to preserve reproductive freedom in Colorado! If you can’t get out, petition circulators will come to you. Get trained as a circulator at the office of Mesa County Democrats and get your friends, family and neighbors to sign! Do it soon. The deadline for signature gathering is the middle of next month.

Coloradans for Protecting Reproductive Freedom (CPRF) made an appearance last weekend in Grand Junction to boost the signature-gathering effort to get Initiative 89 on the ballot, the measure that would amend the state constitution to protect abortion from government interference.

Mesa County Public Library to host educational seminar about menstrual health for teens 14-18 on Sat., Jan. 27, 1-2:30 p.m.

The downtown Mesa County Public Library will host a free educational workshop on menstrual health on Saturday, January 27 from 1:00 – 2:30 p.m. in the Library’s Monument Room. The event is aimed at teens aged 14-18 of all genders and their caregivers. It will include an opportunity to ask questions and get medically-accurate answers from experts in the field.

Many people may know the basics of the menstrual cycle, but not everyone knows what is a sign of a illness and what’s not. This holds true even for adults. This seminar will go beyond the basics of the menstrual cycle to tell teens how to recognize if a period is normal or not, where to get free period products and how to use them, and how to talk more openly about periods without embarrassment or shame.

The workshop will be led virtually by two period professionals who are medical students or physicians-in-training who are specifically trained menstrual health education for this program, which was developed by physician experts.

Signature-gathering effort for ballot initiative to guarantee abortion rights in CO kicks off 1/23 in Grand Junction

States where abortion rights may be on the ballot in 2024 (Chart: Washington Post)

The effort to get Amendment 89, a constitutional amendment to protect the right to an abortion from government interference in Colorado, onto the November ballot will kick off on Tuesday, January 23 at an event in Grand Junction from 6:00 – 8:00 pm at The Mesa Theater, 538 Main St, Grand Junction, CO 81501. Currently abortion is protected in Colorado, but only by a statutory law enacted in 2022 called the Reproductive Health Equity Act, which confers only weak protection that could easily be changed by a vote of Republicans trying to further restrict women’s rights.

Amendment 89 will assure that all Coloradans, regardless of occupation or source of health insurance, have access to reproductive healthcare. Currently, teachers, firefighters, other state and local public employees and people enrolled in state health insurance plans lack insurance coverage (pdf) for abortion care, an inequity that

Republicans are passing laws to restrict womens freedom in the U.S., leading to the need for states to pass constitutional amendments to guarantee women keep those hard-won rights.

Amendment 89 aims to address. As a constitutional amendment, Amendment 89 will also be a stronger buffer against future attempts by politicians in Colorado to limit abortion access in our state.

Craig Gallery in Palisade to host art event 11/25 to benefit HopeWest

Painting by Kay Crane of the Craig Gallery in Palisade with a bow on it like the ones that will designate art pieces that, if sold at the Nov. 25th event, will benefit HopeWest

Craig Gallery at 128 E. 3rd in downtown Palisade is hosting a holiday event called “Put a Bow on It” on Saturday, November 25, from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. Owner Tammy Craig says, “In the spirit of the season, ten percent of all sales and 100% of pieces sold sporting a bow will be donated to HopeWest.”

Gallery Director Kay Crane says, “We’re so happy to be able to do this.  My family has been helped and comforted by HopeWest, as have so many others in the Grand Valley.  Hospice is all about comfort — for those who are leaving and those who are staying.”

The gallery features a wide variety of artistic pieces aimed at holiday gift giving, including paintings, sculptures, ceramics, jewelry, photography and more. They say they have something to fit every budget and taste.

Artists featured in Craig Gallery include Dianna Fritzler, Cynthia Duff, Bud Markos, Chris Eaton, Christine Feller, Diane Anglim, DJ Janowski, Gail Evans, Gayle Garson, Gerry Jensen, Jennifer Kass, John Anglim, Kathryn McBride, Kay Crane, Lori Brietzke (Lorelei), Mary Pat Ettinger, Monica Esposito, Nancee Busse, Nina Williams, Peg Oswald, Ron Cloyd, Sandi Seckman, Shavique, Diane Saulnier, Tammy Craig and Matthew Seeds.

The Mesa County employee behind the effort to fire Public Health Department Director Jeff Kuhr

Lisa Rickerd Mills (Photo: Facebook)

Lisa Mills is a behavioral health strategies manager for Mesa County’s Department of Health and Human Services and by all indications seems to be a key figure in the County’s recent ongoing, unhinged efforts to take down Dr. Jeff Kuhr as longtime Director of the Mesa County Public Health Department (MCPHD).

Mesa County Commissioner Janet Rowland has used county agencies to advance her personal ideology and interfere in personnel decisions before

Board of Mesa County Commissioners. (L-R: Bobbie Daniel, Cody Davis and Janet Rowland). Photo: Mesa County

District Attorney Dan Rubinstein announced he’s closed the investigation into the Mesa County Commissioners’ allegations of financial wrongdoing by Mesa County Public Health Director Dr. Jeff Kuhr, saying,

“We lack sufficient evidence of anything criminal…” and “…[We] lack sufficient evidence that Mr. Kuhr was personally involved in, or personally directed, any level of reporting that would make him criminally culpable for material misstatements.”

With Janet Rowland at the helm, so far the Commissioners have spent $49,000 in taxpayer funds on a financial audit of Kuhr in an attempt to try find some reason to fire him, in addition digging up and spreading around negative personnel comments about Kuhr from as far back as 2011. So far, everything they’ve found, including a $219 alcohol purchase that has since been reimbursed, have fallen flat. Even four members of the Mesa County Board of Health have said nothing they’ve seen about Kuhr so far rises to the level of a fireable offense. Then they all resigned in protest after learning the Commissioners were going to fire them if they didn’t agree to fire Kuhr.

Teachers union president resigns via email amid flap over school closures & conservative school board members’ rejection of health clinic at GJHS

Timothy Couch, President of the Mesa Valley Education Association (MVEA), resigned via email March 8, on the same day the three-member conservative District 51 School Board majority ignored the pleas of students and voted to reject an offer by Marillac Health to operate a grant-funded, school-based health clinic at Grand Junction High School.  The three Board members rejected the clinic at a time when homelessness among D-51 students is rapidly increasing and a Youth Risk Behavior survey by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) (pdf) found poor mental health and suicidal thoughts and behaviors among students are increasing nationwide. According to the CDC, in 2021, almost 60% of female students experienced persistent feelings of sadness or hopelessness during the past year and nearly 25% made a suicide plan. Suicide is also a growing problem among Mesa County youth and suicide prevention is a “health priority” for Mesa County Public Health.

What’s the deal with Republican Mesa County Commissioner candidate Bobbie Daniel’s book?

Bobbie Daniel’s May, 2016 self-published book, is 273 pages and is now out of print.

In May of 2016, Republican Mesa County Commissioner candidate Bobbie Daniel self-published a book, “Solutions from a Nobody: Using Founding Principles to Solve Modern Problems.” She wrote the book to present “clear and important ideas to fix what ails America.” She spent ten years as a hairdresser listening to her customers and put a lot of time into thinking about the problems they talked about. Daniel wrote this book to provide solutions to their problems.

First of all, kudos to Daniel for bothering to think about societal problems at all, let alone try to come up with solutions. Most people never bother, so that’s worth something.

Need a job? Want to make a difference? Cobalt Abortion Fund is seeking to hire 2-3 more organizers on the western slope

Are you looking for a rewarding job that will give you a way to help people and make big difference in their lives?

Cobalt Advocates is looking to hire two to three more organizers on the western slope.

Cobalt operates the Cobalt Abortion Fund, a dedicated abortion fund that helps people cover the cost and manage the logistics of getting an abortion, like transportation, lodging and child care. The Cobalt Abortion fund is 100% donor-funded, and it is the only independent fund of its kind in Colorado.

Cobalt’s goal is to make sure no one has to endure any financial or logistical burdens when it comes to abortion.

Need help finding and paying for an abortion in Grand Junction? Contact Cobalt. They’ll help.

Cobalt Advocates and the Cobalt Abortion Fund are a terrific resources for anyone seeking an abortion on the western slope

If you live in Grand Junction, Mesa County or anywhere on the western slope, need an abortion and are having a hard time finding and/or affording one, your best resource and first stop should be Cobalt Advocates.

Cobalt believes nothing should come between you and your reproductive decisions, no matter who you are or where you live. Cobalt operates the Cobalt Abortion Fund, a dedicated abortion fund that helps people cover the cost of an abortion. They also help with the costs and logistics and other needs people often have when getting an abortion, like transportation and lodging. The Cobalt Abortion fund is 100% donor-funded, and is the only independent fund of its kind in Colorado. Cobalt’s goal is to make sure no one has to endure a a financial or logistic burden when it comes to abortion.

Need an abortion in Grand Junction, or on the western slope? Here is updated information.

NOTE: I’ve written about how to obtain an abortion in Mesa County before on this blog, most recently in 2020, but the landscape on this issue keeps changing. Some options disappear while others expand, and with potential changes looming on the national policy front, I’m re-visiting the topic, and will continue to update it periodically. 

In light of the recently-leaked draft Supreme Court ruling indicating the right wing majority of the U.S. Supreme Court is likely next month to formally overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court ruling that assured abortion was legal throughout the U.S., it is prudent to revisit the issue of abortion in Colorado, and specifically how to obtain one in Grand Junction and on the western slope.

First of all, there is no reason to fear losing the right to have an abortion in Colorado, ever. Abortion will stay legal and accessible in Colorado, whatever the Supreme Court does.

G.J. citizens rally to protest draft Supreme Court opinion indicating Court will vote to eliminate the constitutional right to abortion

Supporters of abortion rights attend a hastily-called rally in front of the old Mesa County Courthouse on 5/3/22 to protest an impending Supreme Court decision that threatens American womens’ right to obtain an abortion.

The Mesa County Women’s Right Action League organized a rally on short notice today in response to a leaked draft of a major Supreme Court decision published by Politico that indicates the far right majority on the Court will vote to eliminate women’s constitutionally-guaranteed right to obtain an abortion, a right women have had for 50 years. The rollback of womens’ freedom would be unprecedented.

Featured speakers included Jennifer Hancock, a board member of Cobalt, a Colorado-based organization that that helps people get access to abortions, Heidi Hesse of One Colorado, Jeriel Clark and Pastor Valerie Carlson of the American Lutheran Church.

Another local chiropractor spreads dangerous misinformation about Covid prevention and treatment

Photo: YouTube, 2010

In October, 2021, the U.S. News and World Report revealed chiropractors are a major force stirring up anti-vaccine sentiment and spreading medical misinformation across the country in the pandemic. Often regarded as trusted health professionals, chiropractors who do this pose a potent threat to the public by hawking supplements as alternatives to vaccines, working to help people evade vaccine mandates, recommending unapproved and potentially toxic medication regimens to treat and prevent Covid, and abetting anti-vaccine movements at the local level.

That is certainly happening here in Grand Junction, too.

Does Greg Haitz’s furtive editing of his “Immune Support Pack” page indicate consciousness of guilt?

Chiropractor Greg Haitz previously ran for Grand Junction City Council. His wife, Andrea, is now on D51 School Board.

Last month we noticed that Grand Junction chiropractor Greg Haitz of the Rimrock Wellness Center at 12th and Patterson, was marketing his own proprietary “Rimrock Wellness Center” brand of dietary supplement, “Immune Support Pack,” with a description that inferred the product could help mitigate or protect against Covid-19, or “C19”:

Rimrock Wellness Center’s “Immune Support Pack” description as it appeared on December 25, 2021, linking the product to protection from, and mitigation of Covid-19

The National Institutes of Health currently warns Americans that

Data are insufficient to support recommendations for or against the use of any vitamin, mineral, herb or other botanical, fatty acid, or other dietary supplement ingredient to prevent or treat COVID-19.”

At the same time, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is actively monitoring for firms that are marketing products using fraudulent claims that they can prevent, mitigate or treat COVID-19.

After the blog about this product was published, we noticed Haitz edited his “Immune Support Pack” web page to remove the descriptive paragraph previously seen above, and instead he had substituted a list of five published studies:

Officials at Memorial Regional Hospital in Craig say Rep. Boebert is ignorant about health care policy and it’s costing lives

In the wake of House Rep. Lauren Boebert refusing to wear a mask on the House floor, calling Covid-19 vaccine administrators “needle Nazis” and likening public health efforts to control the pandemic to “communism,” Andrew Daniels, Chief Executive Officer of Memorial Regional Hospital in Craig, Colorado, told a national news outlet (video) that he is “embarrassed that Lauren Boebert is his House Representative.”

His hospital was recently forced to re-open its Covid ward due to a resurgence in Covid cases in Moffat County, now considered a coronavirus hotspot due to high rate of community transmission and a low vaccination rate, similar to Mesa County.

Covid hotspots are in red. (Source: CDC/CNN)

Daniels, who described himself as a “super conservative,” said of Boebert,

“I’m embarrassed that she’s my representative. I think if you’re going to take a stance on health care policy, you might actually want to learn something about healthcare policy.”

Dr. Matthew Grzegozewski, Memorial Regional Hospital’s Director of Emergency Medicine struck a similar note, about Boebert, saying

“A lot of people are listening [to what Boebert] is saying and a lot of what she’s putting out there is ideology and in fact isn’t medically sound, and it’s putting people in danger and quite honestly costing people their lives, and it’s frustrating to have to fight against that. 

Mesa County’s pervasive right wing culture is damaging our public health and economy

No one wants to say it, but Mesa County’s far right wing culture is now hurting us all, physically and economically

Everybody is dancing around it, but no one wants to come right out and say it. It’s the single biggest threat to Mesa County’s population in the last hundred years, but everyone is scared to say it:

Mesa County’s dominant far right wing culture is now causing a resurgent spread of Covid-19, sending people to the hospital and endangering the children in our community who are too young to get vaccinated. Our area’s right wing culture, with its erroneous, misinformed beliefs, is causing the majority of Mesa County residents to refuse to get vaccinated against Covid-19. At the same time our elected officials have abandoned all other means of controlling the pandemic, like masking and physical distancing requirements.

We’ve heard over and over again that the Covid vaccine is now our only way out of the pandemic, but because most people in Mesa County are refusing to get vaccinated, we may never escape the pandemic.

Better Know a District: The CO House District 54 race, Soper vs. Slaven-Emond

Where is Colorado House District 54?

Colorado House District 54 is all the dark pink area in this map. It includes Clifton, Fruitvale, DeBeque, the towns of Mesa, Collbran, Fruita, Loma, Mack, Glade Park, Palisade, Whitewater, Gateway, the western side of Delta County and the central part of the town of Delta proper. It’s the “doughnut” around state House District 55.

Republican Matt Soper at the GOP rally in Delta on Saturday, May 16, 2020, where he told numerous lies to the crowd.

The race for Colorado House District 54 is between the incumbent, Matt Soper (R) and AliceMarie Slaven-Emond (D), both of Delta. You can read articles in this blog about Matt Soper at this link.

Matt Soper (R-incumbent)

Soper won the House Representative D-54 office in 2018 under contentious conditions. Published articles reveal that Soper lied to the Secretary of State about where he lived in 2018, listing the address of a rental house his mother owns as his own residence in order to meet the residency requirement to qualify to hold the House District 54 seat. In truth, an unrelated family had lived in the house for years, and after one of the occupants swore in a legal affidavit that Matt Soper did not live in the house with him and his family, Soper had his mother evict the family from the home as retribution for telling the truth publicly about how Soper did not live there.

In new documentary, “Jane Roe” of the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision reveals she was paid to switch sides in the abortion debate


In a new documentary released Friday, May 22, Norma McCorvey, the plaintiff in the landmark 1973 Supreme Court ruling in Roe V. Wade, reveals that she was paid by anti-abortion factions to switch her position from supporting to opposing abortion rights for women.