New York Urban League President and CEO Arva Rice issued the following statement in response to the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police:
The New York Urban League joins the Urban League of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis/St. Paul), and champions for justice across the nation in calling for the arrest and criminal prosecution of the former Minneapolis police officers involved in the brutal death of George Floyd.
Unfortunately, we understand the frustration of the thousands of protesters that are pouring into the streets calling for justice. It is the result of decades of disregard for Black life. It is a thread that runs from the institution of slavery through Emmett Till to Trayvon Martin and Ahmaud Arbery. George Floyd’s death – documented on camera – was especially difficult for New Yorkers who watched Eric Garner suffer a similar fate with similar final words.
We cannot allow ourselves to grow numb to such brazen disregard of human life. George Floyd’s death must be met with justice that Eric Garner did not experience.
Mayor Frey’s swift action in terminating the officers involved is commendable, but it is only a first step. Officers who behave that way when cameras are turned on them cannot be given the benefit of the doubt when they believe no one is watching.
We stand with the Urban League of the Twin Cities in demanding the following:
- Immediate arrest and criminal prosecution of the four former police officers involved in the killing of Mr. Floyd
- Immediate public release of all bodycam footage of the incident captured by the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) and Minneapolis Parks Police
- The appointment of an experienced, independent expert from outside the MPD to investigate the conduct of the four officers
Our hearts are with Mr. Floyd’s family and the people of Minneapolis.
Arva Rice| President & CEO
New York Urban League, Inc.
204 West 136th Street | New York, NY 10030