Hundreds attend Black Lives Matter rallies in Brent
- Credit: Archant
Hundreds of people attended Black Lives Matter rallies that were organised in Brent for those unwilling or unable to travel in central London.
Crowds gathered in Roundwood Park and Kilburn Grange on Saturday (June 6) as part of a peaceful Black Lives Matter protest against the death of George Floyd in the US.
Families and individuals gathered in the parks before getting on one knee in memory of the 46-year-old father.
Mr Floyd died after pleading with a white Minneapolis police officer who was kneeling on his neck that he couldn’t breathe.
His death has led to global protests and riots in the USA and elsewhere.
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The rally in Roundwood Park was organised by seven mum. Tasha Thompson said: “Rachel Crookes, Anna Myers, Anita Whittaker, Sacha Lumley, Joey Bates, Linda Agyemang and I formed Brent Black Lives Matter to take a stand against racism and create a better future for our children and those within our community.
“It was well attended by more than 350 people and was a peaceful, uplifting atmosphere which brought residents of Harlesden together.”
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Dawn Butler, MP for Brent Central, joined the “family friendly” event. “These parents are saying the kind of world that they want their children to grow up in is a world where you don’t watch a black man being murdered by a white racist police officer,” she said in a video clip.
She later said to the crowd: “In show of solidarity we should take the knee, if you are able to take the knee.”
“In unity we stand, Black Lives Matter. Now take your knee off my neck,” she said whichthe crowd repeated.
The Labour MP has written to the secretary of state Priti Patel asking for the immediate suspension of rubber bullet, tear gas and other exports to the US,
She said in the letter that parliamentarians need to “act fast” to ascertain whether anti-crowd gas, riot equipment, rubber bullets and other small arms from the UK have been used in US protests. “The UK Government is bound by law to freeze export of all policing and security equipment to the US where it could be
misused. There is clear evidence to show that the aforementioned items are being misused.”
It is a cause close to activist Savannah Mullings-Johnson’s heart, who said more needs to be done before to be truly be able to say “All Lives Matter”.
The 22-year-old from Kingsbury hopes people will support a BLM fundraiser she said: “Black people have been fighting for centuries and it is heartbreaking to believe that in 2020, we still need to have these conversations.
“By supporting Black Lives Matter, you are not disregarding the lives of others. You are simply saying that All Lives cannot matter until Black Lives do.”