Speaker Heastie Statement

George Floyd’s murder was a tragedy. It was a crime that the entire world witnessed on video over the course of nine minutes and 29 seconds. That Derek Chauvin was found guilty on all counts is important and it is right. But I also know we must continue to challenge the system that enabled his murder in the first place.

George Floyd’s death was a turning point. Across our state, our country and indeed the world, people took to the streets to say no more to the systemic racism that costs the lives of our friends and neighbors. To say that those with power and authority must be held responsible for their actions. To demand that we rebalance the tilted scales of justice in our country. To say that Black Lives Matter.

This verdict is a victory, but we cannot forget that George Floyd was more than a rallying call for a reckoning in our justice system – he was a man. He was a father and a brother, and his family will always feel his loss. They have endured this terrible tragedy with grace and dignity. My heart goes out to George Floyd’s friends and family. I hope this brings them a sense of justice, and that they can find strength and peace.