Pam Clifton is Communication Coordinator for the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition (CCJRC). She studied psychology and sociology at the University of Colorado and University of Washington and has spent the last two years studying filmmaking at the Open Media Foundation. Pam served seven years in prison in Colorado for a minor drug conviction and successfully completed parole in 2005.
Pam has worked as a fundraiser and supervisor for a local fundraising organization that raises money for non-profit and political organizations around the country. She joined the staff of CCJRC in 2006 to see collateral consequences reduced, drug laws changed, parole laws reformed and the warehousing of people in Colorado stopped. As the communications coordinator for CCJRC, Pam has prioritized voter education to make sure Coloradans with criminal records know they have the right to vote. She is also working on a campaign to make the decisions of district attorneys more transparent and accountable.
Today Pam is gearing up to join the national effort to resist the rollback of healthcare access for millions of low-income people. Several years ago, CCJRC launched its Take Care Health Matters campaign after Colorado decided to expand eligibility for Medicaid. “This was a game-changer for justice-involved people,” Pam says. “It offers the single most effective opportunity to stop criminalizing low-income people with mental illness or addiction and help them get care – not a cage.”