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  • Writer's pictureStephen Hanks

Coroner: Why is it a political position?

It is interesting that positions like Coroner and Sherriff are still elected in some jurisdictions like ours. Being elected is supposed to make us more accountable to the people who elect us, as they have the power to elect someone else next time. Larimer County is nearly 47% unaffiliated with D's and R's being fairly equal at 25% each, so the elected coroner cannot be solely influenced by their party, and must represent a broader electorate.

No matter how the Coroner comes into the position, personal political views will still influence how the Coroner works for the community. I believe in local government that is run by the people, for the people. To me this means being proactive in the community and partnering with other agencies, non-profits, community groups, and residents to develop creative solutions to issues affecting our communities.

So while administratively, the office is run based on the Coroner's view of how a local government office works within a society, the actual substance of the investigations should be guided by sound science and based on evidence. I want to ensure I balance both in order to provide the best service to Larimer County residents and visitors.

I will work closely with various groups focused on issues of suicide awareness and prevention, Fentanyl and other substance abuse issues, gun violence, and traffic accidents.

I will create an online dashboard to share our information, data, and statistics, generated from our investigations so that the community has the best information readily available to make evidence-based data-driven decisions and accomplish their missions.

I will produce an Annual Report that thoroughly analyzes the data and statistics we release throughout the year, providing (1) a look at our accomplishments, (2) areas for improvement, and (3) outlining our goals for the future.

I will be able to share this important information in a manner that protects personally identifiable information and honors human dignity.

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