The trial of Derek Chauvin has ended, and he has been found guilty on all counts of George Floyd’s murder. We may celebrate this victory as it has been a long time coming – centuries long. We also know that even though we may feel like “justice has been served,” a man still died. George Floyd’s family has commented that if justice were served, he’d still be alive. Our hope is that this verdict brings even a small amount of relief to the grief felt by George Floyd’s family and communities who have been so courageous in their sustained mourning.
We remain horrified and saddened by the killing of Daunte Wright, a 20-year-old father of a two-year-old, of 13-year-old child Adam Toledo, and of violent acts against the Asian American community that continue to rise. And as I write this note, we are all hearing news that a 16-year-old child, Mah’Kia Bryant, was shot by police minutes after the verdict rendered yesterday.
It is clear that while we take a moment to release a breath of deep relief, in the next, we must keep up the fight for sustained justice. So that sinking feeling before hearing the verdict no longer exists as a symptom of the PTSD from being disappointed again, yet not surprised. So that individuals can live to defend themselves. So Black, Indigenous, and people of color are invested in and not caught in carceral systems that criminalize being poor.
LIFT remains committed to this fight. We join in the call for real change that brings divestment in structures and policies that threaten lives, and investments in services and systems that are rooted in care, strengthen communities, and allow our families to thrive – like universal basic income, living wages, and access to resources. This is why we are committed to addressing structural change by centering the voices of the parents we partner with.
We hope you will also join us in allowing this moment to renew your conviction to take a stand against racial injustice, dismantle the systems that allow it to happen, and invest in change that brings support, justice, humanity, and equity to historically marginalized Black and Brown communities.
Michelle Rhone-Collins, LIFT CEO
Gina Coburn, LIFT National Board Chair
& LIFT’s Leadership Team