On the eve of the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s death, the nation is reflecting. Here in Dallas, the week kicked off with a panel discussion hosted by the Next Generation Action Network at South Oak Cliff High School.
Organizer Dominique Alexander said he wanted to divert from discussions that often happen at rallies or protests, and instead bring the conversation into a panel setting. The panelists invited to speak were asked to share their personal stories. Each spoke about their experiences losing a family member at the hands of the police.
The discussion focused on policing in Black and brown communities, police funding and reform, and what can be done collectively to bring about change.
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Atatiana Jefferson sisters, Ashley and Amber Carr, were invited to speak on the panel. Jefferson was killed in 2019 by Fort Worth Police Officer Aaron Dean. Tiffany Crutcher was also on the panel. Crutcher’s twin brother Terence Crutcher was shot and killed by Tulsa police in 2016.
Crutcher said this last year has been triggering. Crutcher is here in Dallas after spending time at the nation’s capital pushing for the George Floyd Police Reform Bill - which focuses on changing police techniques and policy.
“There’s still gridlock, there’s still negotiations going on and we as families it’s not about politics as usual,” she said. “It is about meaningful and purposeful legislation that will prevent what happened to Terence Crutcher, Botham Jean, Atatiana Jefferson and George Floyd from happening again.”
That bill passed in the House but not yet in the Senate.