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Content warning: police violence, death in custody.

“I can’t breathe,” were the words George Floyd uttered with his hands handcuffed behind his back, while a police officer kneeled directly on his neck, refusing to move for more than seven minutes. 

When the police officer finally removed his knee from George’s neck, George’s body was unresponsive. He was taken to a hospital where he was pronounced dead.George Floyd was an unarmed Black man.

Earlier, a grocery clerk had called the police thinking George had tried to use a forged currency in the store, but that phone call proved to be fatal when the police arrived. If the police hadn’t used force unlawfully, George would still be alive today.

George’s death comes in the wake of a series of acts of racist violence against Black Americans that illustrates astounding levels of violence and discrimination in the USA.

This includes the killing of a Black man who was out jogging, Ahmaud Arbery; the killing of Breonna Taylor, a Black woman who was sleeping in her apartment when the police opened fire on her, and so many more. The police commit human rights violations at a shockingly frequent rate, particularly against racial and ethnic minorities, and especially Black Americans.

In 2019 alone, the police were involved in the deaths of over 1,000 people in the USA.

Those aren’t just numbers, but a person's life: someone's parent, sibling, cousin, nephew, spouse, child. 

The officers involved in George’s death have been fired from their jobs, but this cannot be considered justice. George’s family and community are calling for all those responsible to be held accountable and for guarantees that this will not happen again.

His death is also a sobering reminder of Australia’s own shameful record on Indigenous deaths in custody.
 
Since the conclusion of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody in 1991, 407 people have died in police custody without a single conviction recorded and Indigenous people remain grossly overrepresented in Australia’s prison system. Amnesty International Australia continues to call for independent and transparent investigation of such incidents.

Take action now and call on USA authorities to make sure that all those responsible in the death of George Floyd are held accountable.

Join George’s friends, family, and community to demand #JusticeforFloyd!