The school will no longer enlist the help of the police department for football games, concerts, and other events.
Trigger Warning: Racism, Violence Against Black People
The University of Minnesota announced in a press statement by University President Joan Gabel that it would no longer contact the Minneapolis Police Department to provide security efforts for their large events, The Washington Post reports. President Gabel cited George Floyd's murder as the reason. Floyd, an unarmed black man, was killed by white police officer Derek Chauvin. As protests broke out across the state, the University also decided to take a stand against police brutality. Though the four police officers involved in the incident were immediately fired, thousands of people across the United States have demanded that they are held accountable for the victim's needless death.
"Our hearts are broken after watching the appalling video capturing the actions of Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) officers against George Floyd leading to his tragic death," the President wrote in the press release. "As a community, we are outraged and grief-stricken. I do not have the words to fully express my pain and anger and I know that many in our community share those feelings, but also fear for their own safety. This will not stand." As per the statement, the school affirmed that it would no longer contact the Minneapolis Police Department for additional law enforcement support during its football games, concerts, and other large events. The University also plans to seize its additional services such as K-9 explosive-detection units for school events.
Keep in mind the Minneapolis police left their posts at a Minnesota Lynx game because they were upset about the t-shirts the players wore in remembrance of Philando Castile. Just imagine what might be directed at the University of Minnesota now. https://t.co/a1FAaWHpWd— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) May 28, 2020
Gabel asserted, "We have a responsibility to uphold our values and a duty to honor them. We will limit our collaboration with the Minneapolis Police Department to joint patrols and investigations that directly enhance the safety of our community or that allow us to investigate and apprehend those who put our students, faculty, and staff at risk." The move has been rather monumental; few educational institutions have taken such a strict stand against government authorities. The University of Minnesota received much praise for their decision to distance themselves from the tainted police department.
Four police officers of the Minneapolis Police Department were fired after a video of former Officer Chauvin placing his knee on Floyd’s neck outside a market was released to the public. In the video, the victim can be seen lying on the ground handcuffed. He stated, over and over, "Please, I can’t breathe." The video has brought back many memories of Eric Garner's murder in 2014, which took place under similar circumstances. Protests erupted in the city on Wednesday - the second night in a row - in support of Floyd, a father of two. The community has accused the Minneapolis Police Department of institutional racism for many years now. Floyd's murder brought the frustration to a head. As the city and state navigate the intricate difficulties of addressing the systemic racism that left a man dead, President Gabel declared that it was necessary to "act when our neighbors are harmed and in pain." She shared, "My heart is heavy and my thoughts are with the loved ones and friends of George Floyd. Let our voices be heard."