By Adair Mosley, President and CEO, Pillsbury United Communities
This has been a traumatic week. Once again, a black man was brutally murdered by police. We grieve George Floyd in the midst of our fresh grief over Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery. We mourn the many other victims of white supremacy for whom our systems have never produced justice.
We are heartbroken. We are enraged. We are resolved to make this a turning point. The black, brown, and indigenous communities we serve (and come from) deserve so much more than has been delivered.
As we reflect on the week that’s been and the days, weeks, and months to come, we are clear in our commitments:
- We are centering justice for George Floyd in everything we do. We must not lose sight of how we got here, and we must ensure it never happens again. We are hopeful to hear that Attorney General Keith Ellison is taking over the Floyd case. We stand with the local civil rights leaders and national figures who spoke at our downtown press conference and rally last week in demanding that all four Minneapolis police officers involved in Floyd’s death be arrested, tried and convicted of murder. We expect justice to be served, and we will be content with nothing less.
- We are continuing to meet basic needs amidst the challenges of this moment. Our communities are suddenly without vital resources in the midst of a global pandemic. Our food shelves and community meal programs remain open and responsive to new needs. We are tending to those in our network.
- We are telling our communities’ true stories. Our media sources, KRSM Radio (98.9 FM) and North News, have been diligently working to amplify on-the-ground voices in a moment where simplifications, stereotypes, and outright falsehoods persist. We are bringing context, nuance, and lived experience to our coverage.
- We are tracking toward systems change by investing in long-term policy work designed to dismantle racial disparities. We believe our communities have the answers to our greatest challenges. Please be on the lookout for more information on this in the coming week.
As we move forward, we will continue to celebrate the resiliency and connection of our communities. In this devastating moment, we are witnessing and experiencing love that transcends and persists despite the circumstances. We have been blown away by our North Minneapolis neighbors, for example, who have spent long nights protecting North Market. Because of them, the only remaining full-service grocery store on the Northside has remained open.
We hope you will join us in the vital work this moment calls for. Examine what you are feeling. Learn what your discomfort, your rage, your heartbreak, or your apathy has to teach you. Examine the power you hold and imagine how you could wield it in direct service of dismantling white supremacy. Risk more. Invest in transformative ideas. A just future requires it.
Please consider making a gift to Pillsbury United Communities to support our work today. You can also sign up as a monthly donor to truly sustain this work in the crucial months ahead.
(Photo credit: Lorie Shaull)