WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, a jury convicted former police officer Derek Chauvin of the murder of George Floyd, finding him guilty on all three counts.
Center for Responsible Lending President Michael Calhoun issued the following statement:
We all watched in horror last year as Derek Chauvin denied George Floyd the breath of life with a knee to his neck. While our fear that this obvious and extreme act of brutality might go unpunished has lifted, our hearts still hold the sorrow of precious lives needlessly lost.
This brutal killing is part of the long legacy of racism and the killing of Black and brown people by police, which has continued even as this trial took place. This racism continues to permeate our society. It includes our financial system, which denies equitable opportunity for Black and brown families, who have been harmed and held down by a system that does not afford them the same access to fair, responsible services and opportunities that white communities take for granted.
Even before our nation’s founding, Black Americans sought their freedom and the ability to enjoy the promise of America. Instead, structural racism has met them at every turn, robbing them of the humane treatment and citizenship that they deserve. Institutional discrimination is ingrained in every facet of American society, from the criminal justice system to education and housing. Black Americans deserve a fair shot at the Declaration of Independence’s promise of ‘Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.’ However, they have for centuries endured second-class citizenship despite their free labor being the foundation of our democracy.
The Center for Responsible Lending’s work seeks to democratize access to safe and fair financial services and repair the harm done to Black Americans, as current inequities are part of the ongoing legacy of institutional discrimination in our nation. We also stand in solidarity with civil rights organizations and other Americans who resist this injustice. We call on Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. And we recommit each day to pulling anti-Blackness out of the soil by its roots, holding in our hearts George Floyd and the other precious Black lives we have lost.
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