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A look back at La Voz’ 2018 community section
Photo courtesy: La Voz Staff photo; Suicide Prevention Line; City of Aurora, Spina Bifida Association of Colorado

By Joseph Rios

Once December hits each year, it feels like the year went by too quickly. This year, La Voz covered a wide range of subjects for its community section.

Colorado’s Senior Population

According to the Colorado Health Institute, Colorado’s population of people aged 65 and older is expected to increase by 61 percent between 2016 and 2030. The Colorado Health Institute, an organization that provides data and research to help improve access to care for all Coloradans, found that the counties in 2017 with the highest senior population were Jefferson (94,000), El Paso (88,000), Arapahoe (85,000), Denver (82,000), Adams (53,400) and Larimer (51,800).

Spina bifida

Spina bifida is a birth defect that occurs when the spine and spinal cord don’t form properly. The birth defect is something that impacts Hispanic women in particular, because Hispanic women have the highest rate of having a child affected by the birth defect. It can cause numerous issues including latex allergies, skin problems, sleep-disordered breathing, tethered spinal cord, infection in the tissues surrounding the brain, shut malfunction, accumulation of fluid in the brain, bowel and bladder problems, orthopedic complications and walking and mobility problems.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 1,645 babies are born with the birth defect each year.

Civil Rights Awards

The NEWSED Community Development Corporation honored leaders in education this year through its Civil Rights Awards. Among those who were honored were La Academia, a 47-year old private school of the Denver Inner City Parish, Dr. Lorenzo Trujillo, an attorney at law and professor of music at MSU Denver, Congresswoman Diana Degette, The Greater Denver Ministerial Alliance, a social justice advocacy organization, Michelle Sie, President, CEO and co-founder of the Global Down Syndrome Foundation and Dr. Martha Urioste, an educator and community leader.

The NEWSED Community Development Corporation has done plenty of work for the community, including developing shopping areas, supporting minority and neighborhood businesses, increasing home ownership and other things.

Aurora Mayor Steven Hogan passes

Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan lost a fight against cancer, and he passed on May 13. He led the way for the city as it saw a spike in population and its economy. The city recently opened its Gaylord Rockies Hotel – a hotel that has over 1,500 rooms.

“Hogan was a man who went above and beyond to do right by the city he loved. He led the way to make Aurora the bustling, dynamic city it is today, and Colorado is better for it. He was that rare public servant who put people before party – my God, how we will miss him” Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper said.

Suicide in Colorado

The Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment said 1,156 people committed suicide in the state in 2016. That was the highest number of suicide deaths ever recorded in Colorado. Suicide is the leading cause of death among people who are ages 10 to 24, and Colorado Attorney General Cynthia H. Coffman said too many families have to deal with the tragedy of losing a child.

“Suicide is not only a mental health, family or school issue, it is a public health challenge and community issue that requires coordinated and comprehensive prevention efforts,” Coffman said.





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