Boston community leaders calling for solidarity, justice and change following George Floyd protests

Boston community leaders calling for solidarity, justice and change following George Floyd protests

BOSTON — Community leaders are calling for solidarity and justice for George Floyd and other people of color they say have been victimized by police.

“What people are seeing is our pain," said Tanisha Sullivan, President of the NAACP Boston Branch. “It’s coming to the edge of what else we need to say. What else do we need to do to be seen and to be valued.”

The NAACP is among many national civil rights groups calling for charges for four Minneapolis officers on the scene during Floyd’s death. They’re also asking charges be brought against Amy Cooper, a white woman who called police and wrongfully accused black bird watcher Christian Cooper of threatening her after asking her to leash her dog in an area where dogs are required by law to be on a leash.. ​

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“We still have hope through all of that,” said Sullivan. “We still have fight in us for a better America, for a better community for all of that. That’s who we are.”

Grassroots organizer Monica Cannon Grant is hosting a virtual discussion with the families of Eric Garner, Andrew Kearse and Sandra Bland.

They’re demanding the passage of three pieces of legislation addressing police conduct and procedure.

”For us as black people, we’re dealing with the COVID-19, corona pandemic," says Cannon-Grant. “We’re due to localized violence in our communities due to mental health and people feeling trapped already and on top of that, the trauma and PTSD of watching black bodies die on a regular basis.”

Rashaan Hall is the director of Racial Justice at the ACLU Massachusetts.

Hall, Sullivan, members of the religious and activist communities like Rev. Willie Bodrick III want law enforcement and election reform to address the systemic issues of racism plaguing our country.

”We must think critically about licensure or the de-certification of police officers that have continually engaged in the mis-conduct, brutality and particularly those who take the lives of persons. Citizens of this country," said Bodrick.

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