Senate DFL Leader Susan Kent statement on anniversary of George Floyd’s death

Tuesday, May 25, 2021 marks the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s death at the hands of former Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin. As the world pauses to reflect on this date,  Senate DFL Leader Susan Kent (DFL-Woodbury) released the following statement:

“One year ago today, the world was forever changed as we all watched in horror as George Floyd called out to his mama while he was being murdered by Derek Chauvin, a former Minneapolis police officer who was sworn to protect him. Mothers all around the world, like myself, heard that cry and were moved beyond words. After the death of George Floyd, I went to his memorial service and felt the pain of his family and friends. I also heard the call from so many in our community about the need for immediate change to break down systemic racism, including in our policing.” 

“On that day, the effects of systemic racism and implicit bias were on full display, forcing all of us to recognize the urgent need to address these issues in our communities. George Floyd’s murder fundamentally opened hearts and minds in a way that nothing had before. The guilty verdict of Derek Chauvin last month was a good step forward towards justice, but there is a lot more work still left to do.”

“Last July, the legislature passed the Police Accountability Act which made some improvements around police reform, but was only intended to be the beginning. Since then, the House held multiple hearings throughout this legislative session, allowing public testimony and robust discussions around police reform. Senate Republicans chose to have zero hearings, showing no sense of urgency to address these important issues.”

“As leaders, we have an obligation to embrace this moment and push for change. When I left George Floyd’s service that day, I took a picture of a church I passed called Hope. I still have hope that we can make the changes needed so that everyone can feel safe and actually be safe in our communities. But the work is ours to do. As we reflect upon George Floyd and the last year, I urge my Senate Republican colleagues to come to the table with open minds, ready to listen, so we can pass meaningful police reform. Today of all days, we must renew our commitment to build a better Minnesota for everyone.” 

Senator Susan Kent
Susan Kent represents District 53 in the eastern Twin Cities metropolitan area.

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