Today is the fifth anniversary of the murder of Michael Brown. In a moment that brought national attention to Ferguson and Missouri in the worst of ways, a young Black man was killed by a white officer, leading to an outcry for justice that has never truly been answered.
Empower Missouri envisions a state in which the well-being of all people is prioritized. This is only accomplished when all Missourians can go about their lives feeling safe. However, it is clear that the Show Me State does not offer that feeling of safety for everyone. This is evident in the results of the Vehicle Stops Report, published by the Attorney General each year, and the NAACP’s 2017 decision to issue a travel advisory warning Black people to “pay special attention and use extreme caution” when visiting the state. There is a problem with the relationship between law enforcement and the Black community in Missouri, and it needs to be addressed.
One of the ways that elected officials are working to answer the calls for justice is by holding committee hearings to encourage Missouri citizens to testify about their lived experiences of discrimination and legal hurdles that make life difficult. We have written a letter to the Special Committee on Criminal Justice, urging them to hold more of these hearings. Please read below and help us hold power accountable by signing on.