Buffalo, NY – On May 25, 2020, George Floyd was killed by Derek Chauvin, a former Minnneapolis police officer. In response, Christian Parra, statewide civil rights organizer at Citizen Action of New York, released the following statement: 

“It’s been one year since George Floyd was murdered by Minneapolis police, and one month since a grand jury delivered the guilty verdict in his case. George’s death is a painful reminder that the so-called justice system is anything but just, and that we cannot survive within a system that targets and dehumanizes Black lives. While we mourn the loss of George, our thoughts are with his loved ones. Communities across our state and nation continue to face the harrowing consequences of police violence. Black people represent a majority of police encounters that result in death, including people with mental health issues. While we grapple with policing and work to end state-sanctioned violence in Black, brown and low-income communities, we will fight to turn the same system that killed George on its head, end mass incarceration, and fight for a world where true justice means Black people are not gunned down by police and have the resources they need to lead full, healthy lives.

“Rest in peace to those who have died at the hands of Buffalo Police: Meech Davis, Pito Rivera, Jose Hernandez, and many more. Sitting on the commission for police reform in the City of Buffalo, I wish there were more immediate solutions and implementation of what the community wanted. There haven’t been enough changes to protect Black lives.”