#BLACKLIVESMATTER Protest in London, June 6, 2020

Alexandra Kane, Media Spokesperson for Black Lives Matter - London, Ontario

If you weren't at the #blacklivesmatter protest in London, Ontario this weekend. You missed something special and important - hopefully historic, but that is up to us. Members of our community need the help of everyone to fix the systemic racism in our society. If you're not aware of what has been going on, or how our systems and institutions run, then it's time you educate yourself. Right now, it's our minority groups that are doing all the heavy lifting - but it's time for that to change - because things can't continue as they are. It has been ignored for too long. One of the organizers simple requests was to defund the police that are in the London school systems (SROs) and use that funding for things that will be more beneficial for members of their communities.

“We are seeing a spike in police officers responding to mental health crises and they aren’t qualified to provide mental health support and counselling to vulnerable people, especially BIPOC.” States Alexandra Kane, spokesperson for Black Lives Matter London. 
“Police officers should not be responding to mental health situations like that of Caleb Tubila Njoko and Chantel Moore.  Black and Indigenous people are afraid of police. A mental health worker could have prevented these tragedies.” she continues.
Alexandra adds, “We must put an end to systemic racism. We need to allocate all levels of government funding appropriately to the marginalized and vulnerable communities. We have to stop focusing on the profits of the system and focus on supporting the community. We will profit by the wellness of the community which will in turn benefit the City and its organizations.” 
“Ubuntu, a South African word is defined as a quality that includes the essential human virtues; compassion and humanity. Ubuntu simply put means “you are because I am.”

And here are the organizers of the protest talking about their request. This is the footage that you likely won't see in main stream media outlets. Check out our playlist on Facebook for all the other videos we posted from the event: https://www.facebook.com/watch/establishmedia/255508305783245/

Black Lives Matter London calls on London officials to take concrete steps towards RACIAL JUSTICE

LONDON, ON Local organizers for Black Lives Matter London are calling on London officials to take meaningful steps to address racial justice highlighting decades of systemic oppression.
The list calls for the defunding of London Police Services and re-allocating these funds to mandatory food security programs in schools, increased funding for mental health programs and housing for marginalized communities. 

Demands for school boards:
  1. Food security programs in every school for students
  2. Schools should not be tolerant of racism, have black and indigenous counsellors and mental health professionals that are not associated with Children’s Aid Society London. 
  3. Antiracism education should be mandatory for staff and students
  4. Mandate Black and Indigenous history be included extensively and taught in the curriculums year round. 
  5. Remove School Resource Officers (SROs) from schools. SROs trigger our community and trigger our children.
Demands for MPs:
  1. The Liberal government declare Racism a public health crisis. As we have seen the impact of it on Black and Indigenous People of Colour (BIPOC)communities throughout the COVID19 crisis. 
  2. Decrease the cost of pardons from its current prohibitive amount of $631.
  3. Remove mandatory minimum sentences.
  4. Expunge, don’t simply pardon, BIPOC individuals with cannabis records.
Demands for MPPs:
  1. The Special Investigations Unit, when created by the provincial government in 1990 to investigate death, serious injury and alleged sexual assault involving police, was intended to be a civilian agency on paper, but in reality it is staffed largely by former police officers and judges, who have proven to be incredibly reluctant to press charges in cases of harm carried out by police. Now, nearly three decades after the formation of the SIU, the police still continue to be the gatekeepers of state sanctioned racism and take Black and Indigenous life without fear of consequence. Black and Indigenous people are not safe in Ontario. This is the responsibility of this provincial government and we demand you take action.
Demands for the City of London:
  1. Defund the London Police Service and reallocate funds, as listed below.  
  2. Invest the tax dollars that would have otherwise gone to the police towards 
    • funding for mental health programs. A single police officer’s salary can fund 2-3 mental health and support workers.
    • end the purchasing of assault weapons, and instead fund food programs in every school and provide housing for our marginalized communities. 
    • community programming specific to marginalized communities
  1. Ensure that LPS are not ticketing and further displacing homeless people for existing in public.
  2. Make a public statement on the current state of affairs of the Black community in Canada specifically London Ontario acknowledging the issues to address including the lack of diversity within City Halls politicians and staff and directors. 
Demands for LPS:
The London Police has a particular history of hiding behind the guise of pseudo multiculturalism whenever called out on their racist practices. We call on the London Police to:
  1. Release a full accounting of the amount of tax dollars used to surveil and police black, indigenous, and racialized communities.
  2. Halt all purchases with tax dollars of assault weapons 
  3. Cease the surveilling, ticketing and displacing of homeless and disabled people in London and demand that there be a moratorium on the hiring of police constables in London given the over surveilling of homeless people during the pandemic.
  4. Stop police involvement in high BIPOC density events.
  5. Stop surveilling BIPOC communities, and that they halt the expenditure of tax dollars on high tech surveillance equipment. Understand that over surveillance of Black and Indigenous communities, was, and remains, a violation of their human rights, and has led to over incarceration.

Demands of organizations and nonprofits that serve BIPOC
  1. We demand that all city affiliated groups and all nonprofits serving BIPOC people in the City of London stop working with police for Black history month events and other community events.


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