Millions March NYC, an anti-police violence group that started two years ago during the “I can’t breathe” protests, gathered outside City Hall on Monday demanding changes.
The group listed its demand on a Facebook event: Fire NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton and end his broken windows policing, reparations for victims and survivors of “police brutality from the NYPD budget” and “defund NYPD’s $5.5 billion annual budget & reinvest into Black & Brown communities.”
Bratton announced on July 25 that he plans to resign by the end of next year.
“He needs to go now,” organizer Vienna Rye said. “So many black and brown people are in [jail at] Rikers because they didn’t have $2.75 in subway fare. Meanwhile killer cops are on paid leave.”
The protests come as the two-year anniversary of the Michael Brown shooting on Aug. 9 in Ferguson, Missouri, draws closer.
“We’re not targets,” Millions March organizer Cleo JeffryestoldGothamistin Julywhen the protest was announced. “We’re human beings. Bill Bratton is a racist and a bigot who’s done so much to harm the black and brown community.”
A representative from city hall gave this statement:
“From reducing stop and frisk and marijuana arrests, to launching neighborhood policing and body cameras, we’ve taken clear steps to strengthen NYPD’s relationship with the community while keeping New York the safest big city in America. New York City has a longstanding history of supporting public expression, and we believe in all New Yorkers’ rights to peacefully make their voices heard. Our city’s parks are for the public to enjoy, and NYPD will be on hand to make sure the area is safe and that access is not disrupted by these demonstrations.”
“Policing is a violent, anti-Black institution that originated as slave patrols,” Millions Marchwrotein its protest orientation guide. “We fight for the abolition of policing and prisons and will not be fooled or derailed by fake reforms like body cameras and so called community policing, which further increase the budget and power of the racist and brutal NYPD.”
NYPD officers & Sgt’s getting ready for a protest that will take place this morning at City Hall Park. pic.twitter.com/ls9tsDFfwN
— SBA (@SBANYPD) August 1, 2016
More than 1,000 people are expected to participate, CBS2 New Yorkreported.
— Anonymous Center (@AnonymousCenter) August 1, 2016