Last week, I woke up to text messages from leaders across our union, sharing news and their reactions to the video of George Floyd. George Floyd, as we now know, was a member of our community and on Memorial Day, he was killed by the police in Minneapolis. I did not want to watch the video, but I made myself watch it. All of it. I am still angry and sick to my stomach. I feel such terrible sorrow for his family. And as a white man I feel ashamed and responsible for our society treating a black man’s life with such cruel disregard.
I know that each person in our union family is responding in different ways this past week. To all the members of color and especially all our black siblings- you matter. Your lives matter and your families matter and our entire union stands with you in grief and anger this week. Grief and Anger for George Floyd, and for Ahmaud Aubrey, for Breona Taylor and so many other lives lost so senselessly.
Last week, I saw Latinx and Asian Pacific Islander sisters and brothers speaking out and demonstrating solidarity. And I heard our White sisters and brothers talking about the work we need to do to stand on the side of people of color and denounce white supremacy.
Now is the time for all of us, white, black, brown, API and indigenous to step up our support and fight to build a country and justice system that works for everyone, without exception. All of us have an obligation to help carry the weight in leading the struggle for racial justice.
Jamie Gulley, President