Rocky Flats Downwinders is a community organization founded in 2015 advocating on behalf of those impacted by living downwind from the former Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant near Arvada, Colorado. In July 2017, we were granted 501(c)(3) status with the IRS. The organization came together through common concern about the high rate of illness suffered by former residents in the Arvada, Broomfield, Thornton and surrounding areas. Our main goals are to bring about awareness of Rocky Flats in order to educate the community, to sensitize medical professionals regarding potential adverse health effects suffered by Downwinders, and to offer supportive services for Downwinders.
In 2015, we reached out to local universities for assistance in creating a health survey. We began working with Metropolitan State University’s Integrative Health Program to distribute such a survey which first became available May 17, 2016. An updated survey was approved by MSU’s Internal Review Board April 10, 2017 and includes a larger geographical area and time frame. A working group comprised of professors from three of Colorado’s top universities, Metropolitan State University of Denver, Colorado State University, and University of Colorado at Boulder as well as health care professionals, members of the scientific community and local community groups have provided advice on the survey design.
In April of 2017, Metropolitan State University of Denver revised its health survey of Rocky Flats Downwinders to include residents of the areas circumscribed by the boundaries of Highway 128/120th Avenue on the north, I-25 on the east, I-70 on the south, and Highway 93 on the west between 1952 and the present.
In 2018, we were notified that Metropolitan State University’s Integrative Health Department would not longer facilitate our health survey. In 2019, we began to recreate a community driven health survey with the health of Dr. Sasha Stiles and nurse Shaunessy McNelley.
In 2017, we began working with local medical professionals to design two new educational programs. First, our medical professional continued education curriculum will be designed in order to sensitize local practitioners about the history of the plant and to increase their knowledge base about radiation’s impact on human health. Second, our Healthy Choices: Health Families Program will educate current residents in the area about ways to limit exposures and make healthy choices regarding recreating and farming in the area.
Rocky Flats Downwinders is a 501 (c)(3) organization that is run by a Board of Directors. current board member include Nicholas Hansen- Treasurer, Tiffany Hansen-Director, Sharon Fleming- board member. Rocky Flats Downwinders also works with an advisory board consisting of medical professionals, scientists and citizens. In 2019, Dr. Sasha Stiles joined our team of advisory board members!