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  • Kathy Smith

Hot Off the Press: 2020 State of Working Colorado Report

The Colorado Center on Law and Policy (CCLP) released its State of Working Colorado 2020 report on December 29, 2020. The news release is attached to this blog, and the full report is available at:

Also, there is an article in the Colorado Sun at:

This important report is a compendium of Colorado data designed to look beyond traditional state-level economic indicators of prosperity and provide a critical, in-depth perspective of how working families are faring in our state, including statistics and analysis on income and employment. The importance of housing is mentioned throughout the report and there is a section that addresses housing starting on p. 98.

Among the findings are:

· Economic data gathered after the COVID-19 pandemic shows that job losses were greatest among Coloradans with low wages – particularly in the hospitality and leisure sectors.

· Wage growth for most Coloradans has remained meager over the past two decades.

· There are significant disparities across race/ethnicity, gender, and disability status.

· Almost all of Colorado’s labor force is found in urban counties while many counties have seen their labor force shrink.

Tiffani Lennon, J.D., LL.M., Executive Director of CCLP, states that:

“Our economy relies on low-wage workers, and yet, we must be willing to make the structural changes needed to ensure that low-wage workers can make ends meet. Our economy is not working for most Coloradans. Though we don’t know when this public health emergency will end and when our national and state economies will begin to recover, these findings demonstrate why we should not settle for simply a return to a ‘normal’ economy. CCLP envisions a Colorado where everyone can afford food, housing and health care. Achieving that vision requires a serious reckoning with the data highlighted in the 2020 State of Working Colorado.”

Charles Brennan, co-author of the report and Deputy Director of Research for CCLP, states that:

“Because many of the issues noted in our State of Working Colorado report are long-term, systemic problems, we are optimistic that state lawmakers will focus their efforts on creating a more resilient and equitable state economy that supports hard-working Coloradans in diverse communities across the state for the longer term. Among the measures that Colorado Center on Law and Policy supports for the 2021 legislative session are eviction court reforms, increasing funding for the eviction legal defense program, establishing inclusionary zoning to let local governments set affordable housing requirements for new units, and legislation to ensure that more Coloradans can access health coverage.”

NEWS RELEASE_ Report reveals disparities
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CCLP is a nonprofit research, legislative and legal advocacy organization committed to advancing racial equity and remove systemic barriers in the fight against poverty.

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