June 26, 2023

The future of the Community Relations Commission in Durango is uncertain

KSUT | KSJD | By Clark Adomaitis

The Community Relations Commission in Durango, Colorado has been defunct for months after 4 of the 5 members resigned in November 2022. The commission was a diverse group of citizens convened by the city to provide perspective on diversity, equity, and inclusion issues.

Tirzah Camacho, one of the four members who resigned, said that the work of the commission was "very real" and "hard work." She said that the adversity she faced as a member of the commission was "culminating to a point where I just couldn't, I couldn't subject my myself to it much longer."

Olivia de Pablo Lopez, one of the members who remained on the commission, said that she wanted to continue the work of the commission. She said that there was "justified anger" and "a lot of historical trauma," but that the commission also needed to find "paths for healing."

The city has not taken any steps to reform the commission since the resignations in November. Mayor Melissa Youssef said that the city is still hoping to have discussions with regional stakeholders about reforming the commission, but she is not certain that those discussions will happen.

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