DENVER,CO-The Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition (CIRC) stands behind Edna Chavez following the City of Denver’s unjust decision to terminate her position as an emergency services worker.
Edna, who was hired by the City of Denver to provide support for recently arrived immigrants, was fired for fulfilling her responsibilities. Edna was unable to deliver food from one Denver shelter to another, and when she voiced her concerns publicly, she was terminated by the city’s Department of Human Services. We as an organization believe she should not have been fired for coming forward with her concerns. Edna has been a key member of our coalition and an active leader in advocacy efforts within the immigrant community.
CIRC is grateful to the City of Denver for providing resources to support newly arrived asylum seekers and recently arrived immigrants. However, we also believe there are some challenges and systemic issues in creating streamlined processes to ensure recently arrived immigrants have access to the resources the city is providing.
According to Edna and other volunteers on the ground, there are clear power dynamics and a general lack of communication between staff at the city’s shelters and welcoming centers. We support Edna in her bravery to voice her concerns publicly. CIRC believes the City of Denver should review those concerns to ensure the basic needs of newly arrived individuals are being met. There is also a need to ensure staff who are Spanish speaking and come from immigrant communities are in positions of decision-making power and able to share their concerns without retaliation.
We hope this statement serves as an opportunity for open and honest discussion to rectify not only Edna’s situation but also others that have surfaced from the city’s welcoming centers and shelters. Additionally, we hope to bring awareness to the city’s leadership and fix these internal problems to benefit our new neighbors and the passionate workers who are trying to meet the community’s needs during these challenging times.
Edna Chavez is a student at Colorado State University (CSU). Before her termination by the city, she hoped to earn $2000 in her position to cover education-related expenses. Please give to this GoFundMe page to support her.
La Coalición por los Derechos de los Inmigrantes de Colorado (CIRC) es una coalición 501 (c) (3) a nivel estatal, basada en la membresía de organizaciones de inmigrantes, fe, trabajo, jóvenes, comunidades, negocios y aliados fundada en 2002 para mejorar las vidas de inmigrantes y refugiados al hacer de Colorado un estado más acogedor y amigable con los inmigrantes.