YWCA Houston is on a mission to Stand Against Racism
On Tuesday June 2, 2020 in George Floyd’s hometown of Houston, TX. over 60 thousand gathered downtown with signs protesting his death and the continuous police brutality of African Americans.
Abusive police practices coupled with devastating state-sanctioned violence have exacted systemic brutality and fatality upon African American people since our nation’s founding. Police have shot and killed more than 1,000 people in the United States over the past year. Moreover, Black people are disproportionately more likely than white people to be killed by police. For too long, the cycle of police brutality and racism has been met with cosmetic tinkering instead of substantive structural change. The public protests in our cities today are a response not only to unjust policing of Black people but they are also a cry for action to public officials for structural change.
George Floyd’s death deepens the wounds that have been continuously inflicted on African Americans. Too often, police killings involve officers with a history of misconduct complaints. For example, the officer who killed Mr. Floyd allegedly had 18 misconduct complaints lodged against him with two resulting in discipline. This officer’s disciplinary history is not an anomaly.
Therefore, there is a critical need for a national public registry of law enforcement officers that compiles the names of officers who have been terminated or decertified for misconduct, or whom have complaints lodged against them. This registry would permit law enforcement access to necessary data to inform hiring decisions and for the public to know the employment histories of the officers who work in their communities.
Congressional action needs to take place immediately. In George Floyd’s family pain, they have asked us to peacefully work for change. Let’s honor their request by completing the 2020 Census and going out to vote this November 3, 2020.
#SayHerName: Black Women & Girls Killed By Police
Breonna Taylor age 27. Was shot 8 times on March 13, 2020. She was killed by @LMPD executing a warrant at the WRONG house. This was over 60 days ago, and they have done NOTHING.
Atatiana Jefferson age 28. Was shot and killed on October 12, 2020 in her Fort Worth Home after a neighbor called police for a “wellness check” because her front door was reportedly opened.
Pamela Turner age 45. Was shot and killed in Baytown, TX after an officer tried to arrest her for reportedly having outstanding warrants.
Korryn Gaines age 23. Was shot and killed on August 1, 2016 in her apartment while the BCPD was serving a warrant in relation to an earlier traffic violation. Her 5 year old son was also shot but survived.
Yvette Smith age 47. Was shot and killed on by a Bastrop County, Texas officer after she called 911 hoping to subdue a dispute between two men.
Miriam Carey age 34. Was shot and killed on October 3, 2013 by the Secret Service and the U.S. Capitol Police (26 rounds of gunfire at her car) while making a U-turn at a security checkpoint. Her 13 month old daughter survived in a car seat.
We must not forget that Black women and girls have also lost their lives in police shootings. #SayHerName is making sure we do more to bring attention to the too many Black women and girls who probably would still be here if their skin color was different.