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One Year Later

On Tuesday, May 25, MassVOTE Executive Director Cheryl Clyburn Crawford delivered the following statement on the one-year anniversary of the murder of George Floyd.

“It’s difficult to accept that we lost George Floyd one year ago today. It feels like just yesterday we read the headlines, then released our anger, frustration, pity, fatigue, and countless other emotions. Yet in this past year, all of us have strived to honor his legacy. We organized, marched, and demanded change. Whether or not people wanted to listen, we made them hear: systemic racism continues to plague all facets of life in our country.

“That work occurred in Massachusetts, and continues to occur. Last year, advocates, legislators, and countless activists helped deliver change through a landmark police reform law meant to curb the unjust violence that too many Black and brown individuals experience. But while we celebrated this move, we knew that it wasn’t the end. One law simply couldn’t confront the racial inequality that has infected our state and country for centuries on its own.

“The work we do right now is work aimed at honoring the legacy of George Floyd. That work, at MassVOTE, centers around empowering underrepresented communities at the ballot box. This means not just Black and brown individuals, but all individuals unjustly subject to inequity and inequality, like indigenous, people of color, immigrant, and low-income people. We seek to implement electoral reforms that we know will break down barriers that unfairly impede their ability to vote. These include same day voter registration, expanded early in-person voting, free public transit on election day, and jail-based voting reform. With these reforms, BIPOC, low-income, and immigrant individuals may have their voices heard on the issues that matter most to themselves, their family, their friends, and their community.

“Our work, unfortunately, is far from complete. But every day, while remembering George Floyd, our work becomes easier as it keeps us focused.”

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