The Chauvin trial was Minnesota’s first criminal case to be televised and livestreamed. Racial justice activists believe this is a key step towards accountability from our legal system – letting people see how a criminal trial works and the arguments used to undermine justice and blame Black victims. Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson, who tweeted his analysis of each day’s proceedings, agrees. “We oftentimes just see the trial and we don’t have any video of the killing.” This time, “we saw the crime, and now we’re seeing the trial.” It’s especially important, he says, for the public to see arguments “being made on behalf of police officers… laws that incentivize police to kill us without accountability.”
In the Media
President Biden’s Refusal to Eliminate Student Debt Is Out of Touch With Black Voters Who Helped Get Him Elected
Color Of Change Vice President Arisha Hatch writes about how Biden’s backslide on student debt forgiveness is a major step backwards in fulfilling the pledges he made to Black voters during his campaign. “Student loan debt is not just a national economic issue—it is also a racial justice issue at its core.” Between the racial wealth gap, predatory lending practices, and Black families’ limited access to bank loans, Black students just don’t have the same access to high quality education. Color Of Change just released a survey that shows 84% of Black voters support eliminating student debt. 40% want Biden to make sure any student admitted to public college can finish without taking on loans.
The guilty verdict against Derek Chauvin for murdering George Floyd is just the beginning of a long journey for officials to step up and enact real solutions that change the conditions Black people face at the hands of police, and move us towards true justice and reinvestment in our communities. Color Of Change is running campaigns to support the Department of Justice’s investigation into the Minneapolis Police Department’s practices, to fund non-policing public safety programs, and end qualified immunity once and for all.
Three years after Frances McDormand mentioned the idea of an inclusion rider in her 2018 Oscars acceptance speech, a reimagined version has been launched. Color Of Change’s #ChangeHollywood joined Pearl Street Films and Endeavor Content to release an updated version. The new ‘n improved rider focuses on inclusive hiring, hiring targets, and resources to increase representation of women and people of color throughout Hollywood. All the tools are available at www.inclusionrider.org. COC President Rashad Robinson says, “So far, few executives, studios, productions and agencies in Hollywood have actually backed up their statements about racial equity with action. These crucial resources will help raise the industry’s commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility.”
A charter amendment to replace the Minneapolis Police Department is one step closer to going before voters in November. Yes 4 Minneapolis, a coalition of 20+ racial justice and community activist groups including Color Of Change, delivered 20,000 signatures to officials at City Hall. Their proposed amendment would replace the police department with a new Department of Public Safety and shift authority over police from the mayor to the City Council. They city is under pressure to overhaul policing since George Floyd was killed by Derek Chauvin in May 2020. Antonio Williams said he had spoken with many Minneapolis residents who experienced brutality, injustice and indifference at the hands of city police. “Give us a chance, give us a choice to choose something new that works for all people.”
After George Floyd, many Democratic voters and politicians found themselves getting a crash course in racial inequality. Biden, who was responsible for the 1994 crime bill that spurred mass incarceration, is now vowing to make confronting systemic racism and uplift Black people a tenet of his administration. Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson is quoted in this New York Times’ article on how Biden is evolving with the country when it comes to race and justice. “Biden is actually being Biden by being inside of all of the ways in which the current landscape is sending him messages. That is good, but I don’t want to be classifying this as some sort of out-front radical leadership. That would really not represent everything that could be possible if we leaned in more.” There’s still so much at stake from overhauling policing and investing in public safety to student loan forgiveness.
The guilty verdict against Derek Chauvin for murdering George Floyd is just the beginning of a long journey for officials to step up and enact real solutions that change the conditions Black people face at the hands of police, and move us towards true justice and reinvestment in our communities. Color Of Change is running campaigns to support the Department of Justice’s investigation into the Minneapolis Police Department’s practices, to fund non-policing public safety programs, and end qualified immunity once and for all. Full article is at https://bet.us/3Cfxa64.
Rashad Robinson, president of Color of Change, joins WNYC host Brian Lehrer to talks about how corporate America is reacting to legislation that restricts voting rights – and what more he thinks they could be doing. Rashad says, “Corporations play an outsized role in advocating the terms of our democracy… We are engaging in the free market the same way they do — by telling them that they can’t come for our money by day and take away our vote or make us unsafe by night.”
Full interview at www.wnyc.org/story/the-brian-lehrer-show-2021-04-16/
THE ROOT: Until Justice Is Real: What’s Next After Chauvin Was Found Guilty of Murdering George Floyd
Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson writes for The Root about the mixed emotions Black people feel over the guilty verdict against Derek Chauvin. On one hand, we feel tremendous relief for George Floyd’s family. On the other, “We must ask ourselves: what is actual justice? How do we achieve it? There are three important tests that tell us if we’re truly on the path to making justice and accountability the norm, and we haven’t hit any of them yet.” Original article at https://bit.ly/3ilhrKK
Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson appears on MSNBC to discuss police reform. While Minnesota prosecutors broke “blue wall” of silence by having police testify against Chauvin at his trial, witnesses are still resisting real accountability, he explains. “This is a systemic issue so it demands a systemic solution… Derek Chauvin just did what he did that day with his hands in his pockets, his sunglasses on, and we’re expected to believe this wasn’t part of an unwritten culture of a police department where Derek Chauvin had repeated violations, repeated complaints and nothing was done. This is what we see time and time again.” Full interview at https://on.msnbc.com/37n2YHT
Rashad Robinson writes about Hollywood’s failure to deliver on diversity. “This week we are reminded that Hollywood, despite its calls for change, continues to reinforce systems that overlook Black people’s creative luminosity in favor of the status quo. After the Golden Globe nominations and egregious snubs of Black creators and actors, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the group responsible for choosing honorees, confirmed that it has zero Black members…. Removing barriers for Black people to produce and share content must be accompanied by Black people being rewarded for success — in terms of pay equity and credit, and yes, awards.” Article at http://bit.ly/3cJTkBr
THE LOUDEST VOICE: Corporate America Needs to Get on the Right Side of History. Civil Rights Nonprofit Color Of Change Gets It There—Ready or Not.
Fast Company profiles Color Of Change’s 15 years of groundbreaking to build a new racial justice movement and hold corporate America responsible for their role in holding back change. Our work to harness the uprisings after George Floyd’s death and turn that into real victories, from the cancelation of Cops to a corporate reckoning on race and equity is described here. Full article at https://apple.news/AeP2IHWzvQaOff0ch-vWZFA