(Washington, DC, April 21, 2021) - The Minneapolis' jury verdict finding Derek Chauvin guilty on all three counts is right and just. While true justice would be having George Floyd still among the living, this verdict brings accountability, and we hope a measure of justice to his family. The question remains, will it bring a true shift in our country.
With our own eyes, we saw the events of May 25, 2020 unfold. The bravery of Darnella Frazier to record and then share nine minutes and 29 seconds of Derek Chauvin's actions gave direct witness to the murder of George Floyd. The testimony of law enforcement, medical personnel, and experts further reinforced the truth of what was seen. The jury came to a verdict quickly and decisively, guilty on all three counts.
Structural racism and discrimination are at the root of the widespread and systematic increase in police violence occurring in low-income communities and communities of color. This will not change with one verdict. These systems can and must be addressed through legislation. Community Action calls for strong policing reform to include restrictions on the use of force, prohibiting the use of military equipment on civilians, the end of no-knock warrants, prohibition of the deprivation of rights, and restructured qualified immunity.
Community Action was built around the mission of eradicating poverty in America and the foundational belief that equal treatment for all community members is paramount. Effectively addressing the causes and conditions of poverty depends on strong, resilient communities where all members feel safe and are equally protected.
"There is a glimmer of hope peeking through from the verdict in the Chauvin trial. However, we must continue to fight for the reformation of the systems that have allowed racist policing to thrive. The verdict is the first step on the road to justice," stated Bryan Duncan, Chair of the National Community Action Partnership Board of Directors.
"The verdict in this trial is just," added Denise Harlow, CEO of the National Community Action Partnership. "But it does not change the death in recent weeks of Daunte Wright and in recent days, of Adam Toledo and Ma'Khia Bryant. We must take real action for long term change. Systems must change to ensure no one is above the law."
Community Action Promise: Community Action changes people's lives, embodies the spirit of hope, improves communities, and makes America a better place to live. We care about the entire community and we are dedicated to helping people help themselves and each other.
The National Community Action Partnership (NCAP) is the hub for the nation's 1,000+ local Community Action Agencies that provide life changing services to individuals and families in 99 percent of America's counties. The Partnership's mission is to ensure the causes and conditions of poverty are effectively addressed and to strengthen, promote, represent, and serve the Community Action Network.