PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Tuesday will mark one year since George Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis police officer.
Floyd’s death sparked months of protests against police brutality, including in Pittsburgh.READ MORE: Police Surround Home In Moon Township
Activists in Pittsburgh said it led to some change in the city but there is still a lot more that needs to be done when it comes to police-community relations.
On May 25, 2020, the world watched George Floyd’s life come to an end. The video showed Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin pressing his knee into Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes. He was later charged and found guilty of second-and-third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.
“That video kind of captured it for all of America to see what we go through as black people in our interactions with police,” said Jasiri X, co-founder, and CEO of 1Hood Media.
“If you didn’t believe that there was an issue, you couldn’t avoid seeing there’s an issue now,” said Ed Gainey, democratic nominee for mayor of Pittsburgh.
There were protests in Pittsburgh, just like many other cities. Gainey said this was the beginning of the change in Pittsburgh.
“I think the night George Floyd was murdered and everybody saw it, I believe that’s when it really came to the forefront and people see that justice is the common denominator to move anything forward,” Gainey said.
One year later, Jasiri X, co-founder of 1Hood Media, said there have been some positive changes in the city. His organization and others, like Alliance for Police Accountability and Take Action Mon Valley, continue to push for police reform.
“For us to have a real communication to have a better relationship with the police, we need to see accountability when the police brutalize us, when police kill us, when police harass us, and profile us. Those police officers need to be held accountable and we’re not seeing that right now.” X said.READ MORE: Woman Charged In Connection With Shooting Death Of 18-Year-Old North Hills Graduate Ahmir Tuli
He also said communities are not lacking police but lacking resources.
“A lot of people heard the term defund the police and really didn’t understand what that means and what we’re saying is a lot of money that we’re spending on policing we could actually be putting into building up the infrastructure in our communities, that reduces crime,” X said.
If Gainey is elected as mayor in November, he wants to improve police, community relations.
“My first 90 days, I’m going to deal with police-community relations. I want to make sure that we are not over-policing in neighborhoods and make sure we are being to talk about how we put our police officers back on the beat and be a fabric of the neighborhood,” Gainey said. “Walking the beat, meeting the people, being part of the fabric of that neighborhood, knowing them, and also diversifying our police force.”
Floyd’s murder sparked a passion for change nationwide that won’t be forgotten.
“We can’t sit on the sidelines while this happens over and over again. If we don’t see real police reform, we’re just waiting for an incident like what in Minneapolis with George Floyd to happen in Pittsburgh. We don’t want to see that happen, which is why we’re pushing for police reform, why we’re pushing for community-led policing,” X said.
In a few weeks, 1Hood Media is going to release their community vision around policing.
X said you don’t have to join an organization to be part of the change.MORE NEWS: 19-Year-Old Worker Dies On Neville Island After Falling 50-60 Feet Off Roof
If you want to join 1Hood Media or learn more, you can reach out to them on their website at this link.