Statement from Monica Gray, CEO of YWCA National Capital Area:
Today, a jury held former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin accountable for the murder of George Floyd. At the YWCA National Capital Area, we stand with Floyd’s family, the citizens of Minnesota, and our entire nation as we navigate this next stage of healing.
Today’s verdict offers a moment of respite and hope, yet we know that much more needs to be done to ensure that no more lives are lost as tragically, senselessly, and unjustly as George Floyd’s. With this verdict, we are called to action to ensure that communities of color no longer face unnecessary and excessive force by law enforcement. Racial profiling and the criminalization of communities of color will continue unless we take action today.
We ask that our community advocates for the recommendations in YWCA’s report, We Still Deserve Safety: Ending the Criminalization of Women and Girls of Color, which provides a blueprint for ending police violence against people of color and for advancing racial justice and safety measures that protect communities of color from harm by law enforcement, school resource officers, immigration authorities, and other state actors.
It is our hope that law enforcement agencies and policymakers will take these recommendations seriously; that they will join together with communities in the difficult conversations and actions necessary to reimagine policing and public safety, and to heal from the racial trauma we have witnessed and endured.
As a YWCA, we have a steadfast commitment to justice, with our dual mission of eliminating racism and empowering women guiding us. Today, we saw accountability and the start of true justice, but we know that the work for racial equity is far from over. We will continue to work everyday until injustice is rooted out and institutions are transformed – until justice, just is.