March 23, 2022

HOUSE ADVANCES BILL TO PREVENT IDENTITY-BASED CRIMES

DENVER, CO – The House passed a bill today on a preliminary vote that would prevent crime before it happens and improve public safety. HB22-1234 would help prevent identity-based crimes and is part of the Colorado House Democrats’ public safety package.

“The increase of targeted threats and crimes against specific communities is extremely alarming and cannot continue in Colorado,” said Rep. Dafna Michaelson Jenet, D-Commerce City. “Every Coloradan deserves to feel safe at their place of worship and in their neighborhood. We’re making strides towards improving public safety by investing in smart, preventative measures. This bill will make it easier for law enforcement to solve and put a stop to identity-based crimes and keep all Coloradans safe.”

“Colorado does not tolerate targeted crimes and threats against specific communities,” said Rep. Jennifer Bacon, D-Denver. “This bill focuses on preventing identity-based violence in our state through strengthening local collaboration between law enforcement and community organizations. We’re intent on improving public safety and our legislation will work to stop identity-based crimes before they happen.”

HB22-1234 would create a grant program to prevent identity-based violence. The grants will focus on building strong communities and preventing acts of violence that target a specific population of people, and on building awareness of these crimes to prevent them from happening in the first place. The bill positions law enforcement to develop the strategies needed to solve serious crimes that have widespread ramifications on a community’s sense of safety. This could include projects that strengthen local collaboration and capabilities to prevent and intervene in identity-based violence.

The bill is supported by the Department of Public Safety, One Colorado, the Counterterrorism Education Learning Lab, the Center on Colfax, Out Boulder County and other organizations.