George Floyd, an unarmed black American citizen was killed on May 25th by Derek Chauvin, a white police officer, who knelt on his neck during an arrest for almost 8 minutes. Chauvin has since been arrested and charged with murder.
The protests began on the 26th May, eventually taking place in all 50 states – mostly peaceful, but others involved looting and violent confrontations between different groups as well as police. Thousands of protestors took part in 8 minutes silence whilst kneeling to remember George Floyd.
Online campaigns to support the movement, such as #blackouttuesday, have been observed by millions, and demonstrations have since been held around the world including in many cities across the UK. In Bristol, a statue of Edward Colston, who historically made his fortune through the slave trade in the 17th century, was pulled down by anti-racism protesters and symbolically toppled into the harbour.
The movement has been attributed to a group called Black Lives Matter, whose campaign began in 2013 and became famous for their street demonstrations. The 2020 protests have successfully re-established an important platform and discussion about racism, privilege and prejudice, and have highlighted the importance of black history awareness.
If you would like to read more about Goal 10 – ‘Reduced Inequalities’ please visit our resources page under the learn tab.