WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – A group called ‘Justice for Floyd’ held a peaceful protest rally Saturday at the Wichita Police Department’s Patrol North Bureau on East 21st Street to bring awareness to police brutality. The peaceful rally began around 1 p.m.
“I am tired of seeing what could possibly be my son, my brother, my nephew, that they possibly couldn’t come home,” said Kimberly Parker, protester.
George Floyd died while in the custody of Minneapolis police. The officer who was seen on video kneeling on the neck of Floyd was arrested Friday.
While the protest was inspired by Floyd, protesters were asking for change on what they say is decades of mistreatment to the black community.
“I know what it is to be followed and to be unjustly stopped or told you fit the description when all you are trying to do is go to work,” said Cameo Profit.
“I’ve seen KKK with their sheets and caps on and what is happening is people are sick and tired of being sick and tired,” said Karen Cayce.
The rally brought people from many races, backgrounds, and ages.
“I have a little brother and he is African American and it is really important for me to keep him safe. So we need to end it before it gets worse,” said 11-year-old Ta’lyiah Lewis.
Organizers say gathering peacefully is necessary to not distract from the message. During the event, organizers passed out facemasks to those in attendance.
The peaceful rally started with a prayer and was followed by several speeches from Police Chief Gordon Ramsey, Senator Oletha Faust-Goudeau, Mayor Brandon Whipple, and several other leaders around the community.
Governor Laura Kelly taking to social media saying.
“The death of George Floyd was unnecessary and preventable. My deepest condolences are with Mr. Floyd’s family, friends, and his community, who have all been impacted by this tragedy.”
Hundreds of demonstrators held signs reading, “Black lives matter, I can’t breathe, I am not a threat.”
Rally organizers say they are proud of the turnout and the peaceful manner that attendees kept. They are reminding people that action must continue.
“It doesn’t stop here, you can’t just rally one time and think it’s going to change. You gotta do the work,” said Precious Smith, rally organizer.
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