July 2020 e-News
At the Colorado Organization for Victim Assistance (COVA) we are committed to fairness and healing for crime victims, their families, and communities. We are heartbroken by the acts of violence that have been committed against Black communities and other communities of color and the deep, historical pain that is being highlighted. Black Lives Matter.

COVA’s Board and Staff have taken the past month to talk about our role at this pivotal time. The current injustices in our society - in housing, in education, in the justice system, and more - are unacceptable. While actions matter more than words, we also recognize that vocalizing solidarity holds weight as well.

COVA stands with Black communities and all communities of underserved crime victims. We see you. We hear you. We are with you. Your lives matter. We are committed to creating systems that treat you with fairness, dignity, and respect.

To those in the broader victim services community, COVA is asking for your help. We believe that change begins with knowing our own biases. As a starting point, we encourage you to take a look at the resource list we have shared below. We can all take steps to further our own knowledge on these important topics in order to take positive steps towards a better future.

The field of victim services must also work alongside communities of color and other underserved communities. There are esteemed leaders from these communities, in formal and informal capacities, throughout Colorado. This is an opportunity to identify and work towards shared goals. As established victim service providers, we must also support financial investment in the work underserved communities are already doing.

The victim services field must solicit and take to heart honest feedback on how our services may not be accessible for crime victims of color and those from other underserved communities. We need to commit to making needed changes, which will require us to reassess the institutions in which we work. This is true for nonprofits, systems-based service providers, and everyone in between. Systemic change can happen if we are willing to examine how everything - from the laws and policies that govern our work to even the paperwork we use - can create either access or barriers.

Colorado is a resource-rich state with a long history of leadership on crime victims’ rights. Black communities and other underserved communities deserve to be treated with fairness, dignity, and respect and to have equitable access to resources and services. The time is now. Black Lives Matter!
Stop Asking People of Color to Explain Racism – Pick up One of these Books Instead:
Resources for parents:

Articles to read:
o “America’s Racial Contract Is Killing Us” by Adam Serwer | Atlantic (May 8, 2020)
o The Combahee River Collective Statement
o “The Intersectionality Wars” by Jane Coaston | Vox (May 28, 2019)
Books to read:
o "Black Feminist Thought" by Patricia Hill Collins
o "Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower" by Dr. Brittney Cooper
o "Heavy: An American Memoir" by Kiese Laymon
o "How To Be An Antiracist" by Dr. Ibram X. Kendi
o "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" by Maya Angelou
o "Just Mercy" by Bryan Stevenson
o "Me and White Supremacy" by Layla F. Saad
o "Raising Our Hands" by Jenna Arnold
o "Redefining Realness" by Janet Mock
o "Sister Outsider" by Audre Lorde
o "So You Want to Talk About Race" by Ijeoma Oluo
o "The Bluest Eye" by Toni Morrison
o "The Fire Next Time" by James Baldwin
o "The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness" by Michelle Alexander
o "The Next American Revolution: Sustainable Activism for the Twenty-First Century" by Grace Lee Boggs
o "The Warmth of Other Suns" by Isabel Wilkerson
o "Their Eyes Were Watching God" by Zora Neale Hurston
o "This Bridge Called My Back: Writings by Radical Women of Color" by Cherríe Moraga
o "When Affirmative Action Was White: An Untold History of Racial Inequality in Twentieth-Century America" by Ira Katznelson
o "White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism" by Robin DiAngelo, PhD

Films and TV series to watch:
o 13th (Ava DuVernay) — Netflix
o American Son (Kenny Leon) — Netflix
o Black Power Mixtape: 1967-1975 — Available to rent
o Clemency (Chinonye Chukwu) — Available to rent
o Dear White People (Justin Simien) — Netflix
o Fruitvale Station (Ryan Coogler) — Available to rent
o I Am Not Your Negro (James Baldwin doc) — Available to rent or on Kanopy
o If Beale Street Could Talk (Barry Jenkins) — Hulu
o Just Mercy (Destin Daniel Cretton) — Available to rent
o King In The Wilderness — HBO
o See You Yesterday (Stefon Bristol) — Netflix
o Selma (Ava DuVernay) — Available to rent
o The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution — Available to rent
o The Hate U Give (George Tillman Jr.) — Hulu with Cinemax
o When They See Us (Ava DuVernay) — Netflix

Organizations to follow on social media:
o Antiracism Center: Twitter
o Audre Lorde Project: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o Black Women’s Blueprint: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o Color Of Change: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o Colorlines: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o The Conscious Kid: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o Equal Justice Initiative (EJI): Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o Families Belong Together: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o The Leadership Conference on Civil & Human Rights: Twitter | Instagram |
o MPowerChange: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o Muslim Girl: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o NAACP: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o National Domestic Workers Alliance: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o RAICES: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ): Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o SisterSong: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook
o United We Dream: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook

The Hotel Eleganté Conference & Event Center
2886 South Circle Drive
Colorado Springs, CO  80906
(719) 576-5900 or 800-981-4912
The Colorado Basic Victim Assistance Academy is rescheduled for August 24-28, 2020, in Colorado Springs. Spots are still open! We will be utilizing COVID-19 safety measures, including limiting the number of people in the room to no more than 50 at any time. The registration deadline is Friday, July 24, 2020- coming up fast! For more info or to apply, click HERE, or contact Ami (ami@coloradocrimevictims.org) or Kirsten at 720-399-8281 or (kirsten@colroadocrimevictims.org).
A campaign to have a new Special Group License Plate created to benefit the State of Colorado’s Victim Compensation Fund
Aurora Rise launched a campaign to have a new Group Special License Plate created for the State of Colorado. Proceeds collected from the plate will support other victims of crime in Colorado through the state's Victim Compensation Fund.

The plate needs at least 3,000 signatures from Colorado vehicle owners before it can be submitted to the Department of Revenue, Division of Motor Vehicles for approval in order to move on to the State Legislature. Submit your signature today by going to www.aurorarise.org/werise and filling out the commitment form.
Proposed License Plate Design:
*Please note that the license plate design has not been finalized.
Thank you to those who have donated masks! COVA has received over 600 masks so far!
As local and state agencies begin opening their doors to the public, we are hearing from the victim advocacy community that there is a need for masks. Specifically, agencies are in need of donated masks to hand out to clients entering their buildings, or extra masks for advocates to have on-hand while in the field.
COVA is coordinating a donation mask drive for agencies (e.g. COVA will collect donated masks and will either arrange for a pick-up or ship them to your agency). Whether you need masks or can donate masks, we'd like to hear from you! Please complete our survey and let us know your needs!
Please help the Center for Victim Research (CVR) by taking their ten-minute survey! CVR wants to know about your use of research and data and what resources would be most helpful. This information will also be shared with COVA to inform its planning. The survey closes Friday, July 31, 2020.
Upcoming Trainings
COVA & the Laboratory to Combat Human Trafficking (LCHT) are proud to offer a 3-part webinar series on Human Trafficking (HT).
This is the first of three HT specific webinars presented by the Laboratory to Combat Human Trafficking (LCHT) and COVA. We ask that you watch this webinar before proceeding to attend the next two webinars, even if you have attended an HT 101 training in the past. This training will explore root causes of the crime of trafficking and the myriad of intersecting identities, vulnerabilities, and social and systemic inequalities that can lead to trafficking. This webinar will touch on a wide array of subjects including: The creation of statutes which criminalized sex and labor trafficking and complexities of disclosure, factors that create vulnerabilities, industries across rural and urban Colorado where we commonly see trafficking, mandatory reporting, and statewide resources to support survivors. It will be available on COVA's YouTube channel if you aren't able to view it live. Register HERE.
This is the second of a three-part HT webinar series presented by the Laboratory to Combat Human Trafficking (LCHT) and COVA. We ask that you view the "HT Overview" webinar either live (Noon on July 15, 2020) or on COVA's YouTube Channel prior to attending this session. All sessions will be available on YouTube. This webinar is a deeper dive into red flags and behavioral cues that may indicate someone has experienced sex or labor trafficking. We will also cover protocol development and provide resources to support the creation an internal protocol. Register HERE.
This is the last of three HT specific webinars presented by the Laboratory to Combat Human Trafficking (LCHT) and COVA. We ask that you view the "HT Overview" webinar either live on (Noon on July 15, 2020), or on COVA's YouTube Channel prior to attending this session. This webinar will cover ACES, trauma-bonding, trauma informed practices and the difference between victim-centered and victim-led investigations and/or interviews. It will help service providers and first responders to understand the behavioral cues of someone who has experienced the complex trauma that human trafficking inflicts on survivors. Understanding root causes and complex trauma is key to recognizing the crime in its many forms. All three sessions will be available on COVA's YouTube channel. Register HERE.
The Laboratory to Combat Human Trafficking (combathumantrafficking.org) is a leader in Colorado’s anti-trafficking movement. Since 2005, we have trained over 35,000 professionals and community members; conducted research to drive action and inform policy change; operated the statewide 24/7 human trafficking hotline; and developed over 150 future human rights leaders.

The webinars will be presented by:
Kara Napolitano, M.A., M.S. is the Research and Training Manager at the Laboratory to Combat Human Trafficking (LCHT) based in Denver, Colorado. Kara holds a Master’s of Arts degree in International Development with concentrations in International Human Rights Law and Refugee Protection from the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver. Before completing her education, she spent eight years working and volunteering in Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, working mostly with education-based NGOs in post-conflict areas. She worked at Human Trafficking Index Project Manager conducting anti-trafficking research with the Human Trafficking Center at the University of Denver for two years before joining LCHT as a staff member in 2017. She was appointed to Governor’s Colorado Human Trafficking Council Prevention Task Force in 2018. Also in 2018, she played an integral role in conducting research on the Colorado Project to Comprehensively Combat Human Trafficking 2.0 at LCHT. For the last two years she has led training and education efforts at LCHT, training more than 10,000 individuals in two years in forty counties across rural and urban Colorado.
Learn the basics of Colorado's Victim Rights law and constitutional amendment. This webinar will cover systems based agencies responsibilities, the compliance process, and way that victim advocates in community and systems based agencies can impact a victim's experience for the better. We will pay particular attention to areas where victims can fall through the cracks. Register HERE.
Thank You 2020 COVA Conference Sponsors
Seeking 2020 COVA Conference Sponsors
E-mail Leah Parker at leah@coloradocrimevictims.org
for more information about sponsoring.
1325 S. Colorado Blvd., Suite 508 B
Denver, Colorado 80222