With two of my own daughters being attorneys I was so impressed when a young woman attended one of my first Lake County Democratic Central Committee Meetings. I was already a big fan of our current District Attorney Bruce Brown so when Ms. McCollum spoke at that meeting I knew DA Brown chose his Assistant DA wisely.
Assistant DA McCollum was eloquent, smart, articulate and a fantastic communicator. She spent time here in Lake County keeping us abreast of the DA office’s cases and positions. I knew Mr. Brown would be leaving due to term limits in Colorado and always kept my fingers crossed that Ms. McCollum would run for the position to succeed Mr. Brown.
The McCollum Campaign web site states, “Heidi has spent the past seven years helping to manage the day to day operations of DA5, overseeing the administration, policy development and budget for the office. She also has maintained a consistent caseload consisting of juvenile matters as well as high profile felony cases throughout the district. Heidi has gained the trust and respect of the defense bar, the law enforcement agencies, community organizations, and the residents of DA5.” What they are telling us is that Ms. McCollum is ready to step in immediately to ensure the office continues to represent all folks in DA5 effectively and efficiently.
For me, the two most important platform issues supported and advocated by ADA McCollum are looking out for our most vulnerable populations and a unique understanding that the criminal justice system should defer to the public health institutions when dealing with mental health situations.
I am president of the largest retiree chapter in Colorado, and McCollum’s advocacy for retirees and the elderly is perfectly on point. My constituency, that Ms. McCollum watches out for, is the only demographic in the USA who sinks further into poverty with each passing year. I actually had to appoint an officer of the chapter whose only responsibility is to track and report to our meetings all the swindles directed at retirees. Heidi has been doing that work for years!
Since President Reagan shut down the funding for mental health institutions and treatment, these people have been shunted into the criminal justice system. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), “Two million people with mental illness are booked into jails each year. Nearly 15% of men and 30% of women booked into jails have a serious mental health condition.” NAMI believes that everyone should have access to a full array of mental health services and support in their communities to help prevent interactions with police; and so does Assistant District Attorney Heidi McCollum!
We need McCollum as our next DA. You certainly don’t have to take my word for what she stands for or her record. Go to: https://heidiforda.com/ and see for yourself.