Statement on the murder of Daunte Wright
CONTENT WARNING — After the events of April 11th, people may be experiencing different feelings in response. Some people may be feeling anger, or grief, or numbness, or many other feelings. You deserve space and support to honor whatever you may be feeling or experiencing. Take care of yourself in whatever way feels healthy to you. Mental health resources are listed at the bottom of this release.
STATEMENT — On Sunday, April 11th, police in Brooklyn Center fatally shot 20 year old Daunte Wright during a traffic stop. This tragedy occurred less than a year after the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis and during the murder trial of his killer, former Officer Derek Chauvin. The violent deaths of these two men are not isolated events. Due to systemic racism, law enforcement uses disproportionate brutality against Black people in Minnesota and across the United States.
In July of 2020, the Minnesota House of Representatives declared racism a public health crisis, and just last week the CDC officially declared it a serious public health threat. Systemic racism is a public health emergency, but it is a fixable one. However, we cannot solve state-sanctioned violence without confronting systems of structural oppression. This is why the recently-announced Center for Antiracism Research for Health Equity at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, led by founding director Dr. Rachel Hardeman, will seek to measure, operationalize, and dismantle the impacts of racism in American institutions. Our work will contribute to a needed body of academic knowledge, amplify the voices of communities impacted by racism, and inform policy makers and community leaders in their efforts to create communities in which all have access to safety, health, and prosperity.
Daunte Wright died on the first day of Black Maternal Health Week. In his final moments of life, George Floyd called out for his momma; as he was getting pulled over by the police, Daunte Wright called his mother on the phone as he was being stopped by police. The harm caused by police brutality against Black people in the United States reaches far beyond its immediate victims; a growing body of research is shedding light on how police violence is linked to racial disparities in maternal and infant health.
Everyone has the ability to confront structural racism. You can call your local legislators, get involved in community organizations such as ACER, donate to groups like BLM and NAACP or local mutual aid funds, and participate in protest.
RESOURCES AVAILABLE —
MDH Resources in the Wake of Community Trauma and Beyond: https://www.health.state.mn.us/communities/mentalhealth/trauma.html
Crisis Text Line: https://www.crisistextline.org/
Text HOME to 741741 to connect with a Crisis Counselor
The Healing Justice Foundation & Tru Ruts: https://www.healingjusticefoundation.org/community-healing
University of Minnesota Boynton Health Mental Health Services https://boynton.umn.edu/clinics/mental-health
University of Minnesota School of Public Health Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Team https://www.sph.umn.edu/about/diversity-inclusion/resources/
Find your legislators: https://www.gis.leg.mn/iMaps/districts/
Join the Center for Antiracism Research for Health Equity listserv: http://eepurl.com/htTlr1
RESOURCES NEEDED —
Nelima Sitati Munene, African Career, Education, and Resources (ACER), email@example.com
Donate to ACER here
Non-perishable food items
MEDIA CONTACTS —
Alyssa Fritz, firstname.lastname@example.org
Keelia Silvis, email@example.com
Sarah Bjorkman, firstname.lastname@example.org