PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Several state, city and local officials shared their thoughts on George Floyd’s death Tuesday, a year after the unarmed Black man was killed by former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin.
Oregon Governor Kate Brown said that the proper way of honoring Floyd is to continue the fight for the rights of Black Americans.
“The work of dismantling racism and inequality in this country did not end with Derek Chauvin’s conviction,” Brown said in a statement Tuesday. “This is one step and one example of personal accountability. We must also turn our attention to the structural racism that underpins our institutions.”
The governor added, “George Floyd will never truly have justice. I hope his family can find some peace. And, in the years to come, we can continue to strive toward a more just and equitable future, in his name.”
Portland Police Chief Chuck Lovell shared similar thoughts of evolving the way officers interact with the public.
“We need to balance the enforcement role we have with compassion and humility and recognize our shared humanity,” said Lovell. “A journey of police reform and change is a journey we are on together and have to aid each other along the way.”
On May 25, 2020, Floyd, a 46-year-old father of five, died under the knee of Chauvin — who was later convicted for the death. The incident set off a year of action and rallies by civil rights and Black Lives Matter organizations.
Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt also released a statement saying Floyd’s killing. “demonstrated something that our diverse communities have long understood but our white communities often manage to ignore: That Black people, in particular Black men, are disproportionately the victims of police brutality, and that brutality really is the right word for the incredibly excessive use of physical force that is sometimes applied by law enforcement against Black bodies.”
Several states moved to prohibit or severely limit the use of chokeholds and neck restraints after Floyd’s death last year. At least 17 states, including Minnesota, have enacted legislation to ban or restrict the practice, according to data provided to The Associated Press by the National Conference of State Legislatures.