Denver Health clarifies employee speech policy after Councilwoman Candi CdeBaca raises concerns

Colorado Politics: Denver Health and Hospital Authority will be clarifying part of its internal policy Thursday after City Councilwoman Candi CdeBaca expressed concerns regarding employees’ ability to speak to elected officials or the media.

In a memo, Denver Health executives told employees Wednesday that they could not speak to media or elected officials unless given permission, a practice CdeBaca called “wildly unethical and inappropriate” in an email Thursday morning to Jackie Zheleznyak, Denver Health’s director of government relations.  

Denver Health employees recently began unionizing after it became public that hospital executives received bonuses — some upwards of $200,000 — one week after hospital staff were asked to take pay cuts. During a City Council meeting earlier this month, CdeBaca said she had received multiple calls from Denver Health workers “who felt like their safety and health have been jeopardized and they haven’t had an outlet” to speak up.

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