Statement about the killing of George Floyd

We are deeply saddened and angered by the recent killings of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor in the USA, adding to a litany of names, including Eric Garner, Philando Castile, Trayvon Martin and Tamir Rice.

But this, too, is ‘our’ problem in Europe.

Seeing these events as isolated incidents particular to the US ignores the reality, trauma and pain of black and brown European people.

We cannot forget tragic deaths in police custody, including Sean Riggs, Joy Gardner, Sheku Bayoh and Adama Traoré.

We must acknowledge the systemic racism and discrimination that exists in all aspects of society: in education, housing, and health inequalities, barriers in employment, lack of representation in politics and the media.

We must also acknowledge Europe’s imperial and colonial past contributes to bringing us to this point.

New Europeans is a civil rights organisation championing freedom of movement and solidarity in Europe.

We believe in equality and diversity, and in non-discrimination, but we must do more to highlight the systemic challenges for those with black and brown skin in exercising their right to freedom of movement, to non-discrimination, and to living as valued members of society.

We believe also in inclusion for all and for our future generations that there is a sense of belonging.

That is why we say emphathically today #JusticeforGeorgeFLoyd #BlackLivesMatter.

We must work to challenge discrimination and racism in the home, work place, on our streets, and in wider society.

As an organisation we must work consistently for change across Europe and support all to ensure their rights through decision-making and policy-making to tackle racism and xenophobia.

We must stand in solidarity with campaigns on racial violence and discrimination, to be an ally.

As an organisation we must ensure Black voices and experiences are heard, influence, and are valued, integral to our work, our priorities and message - so that we can help amplify them at European state-level, and across the continent. Black lives do matter.

Our fight for civil rights must learn from others’ fight, to join with others’ fight, with humility, and a renewed commitment and strength to achieve justice and freedom for all.


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