The death of George Floyd at the hand of Minneapolis police has shaken the country, and as many of us are well aware, this was not an isolated incident. Innocent, unarmed black men and women have been beaten and/or killed by police for far too long, and it continues because of the institutional racism that enabled it in the first place. We stand with the nationwide protesters who have been on the streets every night since Floyd's death because this voice of dissent needs to be heard. We need to end racism. We need to end police brutality.
There are other ways to help and/or further educate yourself on these topics, and if you're looking for some resources, here are a few that we recommend:
Black Lives Matter Global Network
Black Lives Matter "was founded in 2013 in response to the acquittal of Trayvon Martin’s murderer. Black Lives Matter Foundation, Inc is a global organization in the US, UK, and Canada, whose mission is to eradicate white supremacy and build local power to intervene in violence inflicted on Black communities by the state and vigilantes. By combating and countering acts of violence, creating space for Black imagination and innovation, and centering Black joy, we are winning immediate improvements in our lives."
National Bail Fund Network
If you'd like to help protesters who have been arrested during the past few days, consider the Community Justice Exchange's National Bail Fund Network. "The National Bail Fund Network is made up of over sixty community bail and bond funds across the country. We regularly update this listing of community bail funds that are freeing people by paying bail/bond and are also fighting to abolish the money bail system and pretrial detention."
Minnesota Freedom Fund
To help protesters specifically in Minnesota, where George Floyd was killed, the Minnesota Freedom Fund is a community-based fund that has gained a lot of traction since Floyd's death (and has been promoted and donated to by several high-profile musicians and other celebrities). "We stand against cash bail as unjust and identify wealth-based discrimination as a vehicle for the criminal justice system to target populations for structural violence," they write.
Update: "The financial needs for protester bails has almost certainly been met. Starting June 5, donations may be used to expand legal support for those arrested or incarcerated protesting the murder of George Floyd, and our core values and mission. Further donations will help pay cash bail and immigration bonds for those who cannot afford to do so, and advance our efforts to end the unjust practice of cash bail in Minnesota."
Louisville Bail Fund
To help protesters specifically in Louisville, where Breonna Taylor was killed, donate to the Louisville Bail Fund.
NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund
The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that seeks to achieve racial justice "through litigation, advocacy, and public education." The organization "also defends the gains and protections won over the past 75 years of civil rights struggle and works to improve the quality and diversity of judicial and executive appointments."
National Lawyers Guild's Mass Defense Program
The National Lawyers Guild's Mass Defense Committee, "a network of lawyers, legal workers and law students providing legal support for political activists, protesters and movements for social change," has been working to provide legal representation to arrested protesters. The MDC has chapters all across the country that "provide trainings, assistance in setting up temporary legal offices and legal support structures, and materials for supporting activists engaged in mass protests." You can learn more here.
Reclaim The Block
Minneapolis organization Reclaim the Block lobbies to defund the police and keep their communities safe. "Reclaim the Block began in 2018 and organizes Minneapolis community and city council members to move money from the police department into other areas of the city’s budget that truly promote community health and safety. We believe health, safety and resiliency exist without police of any kind. We organize around policies that strengthen community-led safety initiatives and reduce reliance on police departments. We do not believe that increased regulation of or public engagement with the police will lead to safer communities, as community testimony and documented police conduct suggest otherwise."
Update: Reclaim The Block says, based on the high amount of donations they've received recently, that "if you wish to support the work of Reclaim The Block, we ask you to instead give to one of the groups on this list."
Campaign Zero calls on "local, state, and federal lawmakers to take immediate action to adopt data-driven policy solutions to end this violence and hold police accountable." The organization helps you find your local representatives, see where they stand on certain issues, and demand action to end police violence.
Amnesty International is helping folks across the country demand justice for George Floyd, with a fast and easy way to call on Minnesota Governor Tim Walz to "take all necessary actions to send a clear message that the unlawful use of force by the police is unacceptable and will not be tolerated anymore." Learn more here.
Know Your Rights Camp
Know Your Rights Camp was co-founded by Colin Kaepernick and their "mission is to advance the liberation and well-being of Black and Brown communities through education, self-empowerment, mass-mobilization and the creation of new systems that elevate the next generation of change leaders."
Legal Rights Center
Legal Rights Center "is a community-driven nonprofit law firm, specializing in adult criminal and juvenile delinquency defense, restorative justice practices and youth advocacy. The Legal Rights Center runs two programs: Community Defense Program and the Youth: Education, Advocacy & Restorative Services (Y:EARS) Program. While each program has distinct goals and methods, collectively they point to the overall vision of improving the experience of the justice system for communities of color, if not proactively by solving problems that prevent involvement in the justice system in the first place, then certainly after an individual has been swept up into the system."
For the past century, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has worked "to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States." They are currently working to call on "Minnesota leadership to hand the case over to an independent prosecutor under the Attorney General's authority."
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), founded in 1971, "is the premier U.S. non-profit organization monitoring the activities of domestic hate groups and other extremists – including the Ku Klux Klan, the neo-Nazi movement, neo-Confederates, racist skinheads, black separatists, antigovernment militias, Christian Identity adherents and others." In a new essay, they write, "We commit to working with our supporters and our partner organizations to do everything within our power to dismantle structural anti-Black racism within our criminal justice system, call out hate and extremism and stand with community members directly impacted by oppressive systems."
National Bail Out
National Bail Out "is a Black-led and Black-centered collective of abolitionist organizers, lawyers and activists building a community-based movement to support our folks and end systems of pretrial detention and ultimately mass incarceration. We are people who have been impacted by cages — either by being in them ourselves or witnessing our families and loved ones be encaged. We are queer, trans, young, elder, and immigrant."
Showing Up For Racial Justice
Showing Up For Racial Justice (SURJ) "is a national network of groups and individuals working to undermine white supremacy and to work toward racial justice. Through community organizing, mobilizing, and education, SURJ moves white people to act as part of a multi-racial majority for justice with passion and accountability." The organization offers various ways to take action, and not only can you donate to SURJ, but they provide a list of black-led organizations they suggest donating to.
Communities United for Police Reform
Communities United for Police Reform (CPR) is "an unprecedented campaign to end discriminatory policing practices in New York, bringing together a movement of community members, lawyers, researchers and activists to work for change. The partners in this campaign come from all 5 boroughs, from all walks of life and represent many of those most unfairly targeted by the NYPD." They have events in NYC this week, and they are currently calling on legislators to repeal 50-a.
The National Police Accountability Project (NPAP)
National Police Accountability Project (NPAP) "is a 501(c)(3) organization and a project of the National Lawyers Guild, which was founded in 1937 as the first racially integrated national bar association. In 1999, NPAP was created as a non-profit to protect the human and civil rights of individuals in their encounters with law enforcement and detention facility personnel. The central mission of NPAP is to promote the accountability of law enforcement officers and their employers for violations of the Constitution and the laws of the United States."
Communities United Against Police Brutality (CUAPB)
Communities United Against Police Brutality (CUAPB) "provides assistance to individuals and families dealing with the effects of police brutality. We offer a 24-hour crisis line (612-874-STOP) that people can call to report instances of abuse. We can send out a crisis team to investigate the complaint, take photos and statements and offer immediate assistance. We follow up with legal, medical and psychological referrals and other services as needed. We work to influence media coverage so that survivors and family members have their stories told. We bring together families and survivors in a local network to provide ongoing support and empowerment for people suffering from their encounter with police brutality."
Advancement Project "is a next generation, multi-racial civil rights organization. Rooted in the great human rights struggles for equality and justice, we exist to fulfill America’s promise of a caring, inclusive and just democracy. We use innovative tools and strategies to strengthen social movements and achieve high impact policy change." The organization "[envisions] a future where people of color are free – where they can thrive, be safe and exercise power. Driven by the genius of ordinary people and their movements, racism will no longer exist and justice will be radically transformed."
Black Voters Matter
Black Voters Matter advocates "for policies to expand voting rights/access, including expanded early voting, resisting voter ID, re-entry restoration of rights and strengthening the Voting Rights Act. We also advocate for policies that intersect with race, gender, economic and other aspects of equity.' They "help development infrastructure where little/none exists. This includes staff training, candidate development and network development."
ActBlue's Community Bail Funds
ActBlue's express donation for orgs fighting for racial justice
ActBlue also gives you the ability to make an express donation that will be split across several organizations that fight for racial justice, including Black Lives Matter Global Network, National Bail Out, Know Your Rights Camp, Black Voters Matter Fund, NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, and more.
The Innocence Project
The Innocence Project "exonerates the wrongly convicted through DNA testing and reforms the criminal justice system to prevent future injustice." Their "mission is to free the staggering number of innocent people who remain incarcerated, and to bring reform to the system responsible for their unjust imprisonment." You can learn more and donate here.
Official George Floyd Memorial Fund
To help George Floyd's family with "funeral and burial expenses, mental and grief counseling, lodging and travel for all court proceedings, and [assistance] in the days to come as [they] continue to seek justice for George," consider donating to the Official George Floyd Memorial Fund.
Text Or Sign A Petition
Signing the petitions at JusticeForBigFloyd.com or Color of Change will send a letter to Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey and DA Michael Freeman demanding that all four officers involved in George Floyd's death be charged with murder. You can also text ‘FLOYD’ to 55156, text ‘JUSTICE’ to 668366, or call DA Michael Freeman at (612) 324-4499.
Justice for Breonna Taylor
Donate to the Justice for Breonna Taylor GoFundMe, which was set up by Taylor's family, to help in the fight for justice. The three officers responsible for her death -- Jonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison and Myles Cosgrove -- have still not been charged. Also sign the Change.org petition and send a pre-written email to the Kentucky Attorney General, Mayor, and Governor demanding justice.
The Loveland Foundation "was established in 2018 by Rachel Cargle in response to her widely successful birthday wish fundraiser, Therapy for Black Women and Girls." It "is the official continuation of this effort to bring opportunity and healing to communities of color, and especially to Black women and girls."
Brooklyn Bail Fund
Since 2015, the Brooklyn Bail Fund "have been fighting to abolish state-sanctioned systems of oppression that systemically criminalize, surveil, and incarcerate Black, brown, low-income and immigrant communities. From 2015–2019, we paid bail to free 5,000 people from pretrial detention, and in the past 18 months we’ve paid bond to free over 460 immigrants from ICE detention," as they wrote in a new essay published in the wake of George Floyd's death.
Update: "At this time, the need for demonstration bail has been met. [The organization is] no longer accepting funds to pay bail for demonstrators."
Black Hills Legal Defense Fund
The Black Hills Legal Defense Fund aids protesters who were arrested at Trump's event at Mount Rushmore on July 3. The description reads: "On July 3rd, 2020 Indigenous People and our allies were arrested in the process of defending our sacred lands in the Black Hills. Acts of courage and civil disobedience resulted in arrests and criminal charges. We were protesting the desecration of sacred lands that were stolen from our people."
The New York primaries are on June 23. To vote from home because of the COVID-19 pandemic, you can request an absentee ballot at www.vote.nyc.