The first week of the historic Floyd v. City of New York stop-and-frisk trial included an appearance and words from Reverend Jesse Jackson at the Communities United for Police Reform rally and press conference on the opening day (March 18). Speaking on the movement to change the NYPD and its abusive and discriminatory stop-and-frisk practices, Rev. Jackson said ''We will not give up until we get justice." He further criticized the department and the city administration for seeking to justify stop and frisk. Other speakers included individuals who have been unjustly stopped, elected officials, and community and faith leaders.
The week concluded with revelations of ongoing quotas (in classic NYPD doublespeak referred to as 'performance targets') and directives to target "male blacks 14- 20, 21" from commanding officers. Throughout the week, communities from throughout the city, representing New Yorkers from all walks of life, organized to pack-the-court and speak out in support of putting the NYPD's stop-and-frisk regime on trial and for meaningful reform and accountability of the NYPD. Tuesday, March 19, CPR members VOCAL NY and NY Communities for Change attended the court proceedings and braved the freezing weather and rain with Brooklyn elected officials and community leaders to speak to the press on the impact of NYPD discriminatory policing on New York's most stopped-and-frisked borough, Brooklyn. Jews for Racial and Economic Justice and the Arab American Association of New York packed the court on Wednesday, closing the day with a march to Foley Square and Seder-in-the-Streets performances. Thursday, while some CPR members continued to pack the court for Floyd, Malcolm X Grassroots Movement and the Justice Committee also continued their support for the family and neighbors of Kimani Gray by having Cop Watchers at a neighborhood march to observe and document police misconduct. And Friday, members of the Bronx Defenders, the Justice Committee, the Morris Justice Project of the Public Science Project, New York Harm Reduction Educators and Picture the Homeless packed the court and spoke out against the abuse and indignities of stop-and-frisk, living in a borough where NYPD officers most often resort to force during stops.
During the upcoming second week of the trial, community organizations will continue to pack-the-court and speak out on the importance of the lawsuit to creating a fairer, more just New York City. Floyd trial will resume Wednesday March 27, and CPR members and allies will be packing the court again as CPR member Center for Constitutional Rights continues to put the NYPD's stop-and-frisk on trial. Here's a preview of who's organizing pack the court efforts this coming week:
- Wednesday, March 27: Muslims United Against Stop-and-Frisk, organized by Muslim American Civil Liberties Coalition
- Thursday, March 28: LGBTQ Communities Against Discriminatory Policing, organized by FIERCE, Make the Road New York's LGBTQ Project, NYC Anti-Violence Project, and Streetwise and Safe. They will also be holding a 1:30pm press conference outside the 500 Pearl Street courthouse, with LGBTQ affected New Yorkers and leaders.
- Friday, March 29: Court is in session only for a half-day. Interfaith leaders will be coming out Friday.
- NOTE: Trial is NOT in session on Monday March 25 or Tuesday March 26.
To keep up with Floyd-related news and organizing
- Follow CPR @changethenypd on twitter, 'like' us on facebook. For daily Floyd-related text messages, text 'floyd' to 877877 (Standard rates apply, based on your mobile carrier plan. You can opt-out at any time by texting 'stop'.)
- For background on the trial, check out Center for Constitutional Rights: http://ccrjustice.org/floyd