Shortly after taking the position as general counsel, Ortego recalled a “very uncomfortable” meeting with a Cortez police chief.

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While growing up on a dead-end street, he recalled detouring around yellow crime tape just to walk to school.“I’ve become desensitized to seeing dead bodies,” he said.

Herrera said he can’t count the times he and his peers witnessed negative, life-altering events that “normal kids” never see.

Another report published by the Indian Country Child Trauma Center in 2008 calculates that Native youths have a 2.5 times greater risk for experiencing trauma from injuries, accidents, suicide, homicide and firearms, when compared with their non-Natives.

Of all racial groups in the United States, Native Americans have the highest per capita rate of violent victimization.

Cortez, a town of 8,500 people 19 miles north of the Ute Mountain Ute Indian Reservation, lacks vital holistic trauma treatments.

Child protective services, for example, are limited to helping troubled teens.Keywords: Cortez, Upbringing, Therapy, National or ethnic minority, Poverty, Racism, Juvenile delinquency, Death and dying, Discrimination, Domestic violence, Southern Ute Indian Tribe, Ute Mountain Ute Indian Tribe, Alcohol, - Rose Jergens CORTEZ, Colo.- Native children experience early, unexpected and traumatic deaths at double the rates of other races, according to a 2013 Indian Law and Order Commission report.- Antonio “Tones” Herrera Helping to raise awareness and lift Native voices, 26-year-old Antonio “Tones” Herrera, of Ignacio, Colo., received a Nammy for Best Rap/Hip Hop recording at last fall’s 15th Annual Native American Music Awards.A reservation poet, Herrera’s paternal roots represent the Southern Ute Indian Reservation, a neighbor to the Ute Mountain Ute tribe, headquartered in Towaoc, Colo.“I’m the voice for the disenfranchised people that are from places that nobody has ever heard about,” Herrera said.“We see the same kids victimized over and over and over again,” said Rose Jergens, who directs the accredited Four Corners Child Advocacy Center in a Southwest Colorado reservation border town.