George Floyd anniversary highlights ongoing need for reform

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Four years after the murder of George Floyd, how much progress has been made? Roy Tatem Jr., Civic Engagement Director for the Arizona NAACP, joined “Arizona Horizon” to discuss.

Tatem pointed out the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2021 has not been passed at the federal level, DEI efforts are being stymied across the country, and the Department of Justice has yet to release its report on the Phoenix Police Department. We have also seen the continued shootings of unarmed Black men by police across the country.

Tatem explained there was a world-wide outrage in 2020 when Floyd was killed, but now, it has changed. 

“Now in 2024, that outrage has dwindled tremendously. People want to get back to normal, other things have taken precedence in many people’s lives, from politics to economics to their personal lives,” said Tatem. 

The federal legislation has also not had much of an impact on the case when it comes to policing for the community. 

“There was a huge call and push for the George Floyd Justice and Policing Act, and I thought for once we were going to see some federal legislation that was going to impact policing, and that did not happen. They didn’t feel that their energy was going to impact national or federal legislation,” said Tatem. 

The Department of Justice has been investigating the City of Phoenix Police Department for 43 years, and Tatem would like to see a change in policing practices. 

“Just remember, Phoenix Police Department four years ago was the leader in lethal impact connections to the police, contact with the police, so you could die faster at the hands of the Phoenix Police Department than the LAPD, NYPD, the Dallas PD, Chicago Police. Phoenix led the nation,” said Tatem. 

Tatem also added how he would like to see a change in oversight. 

“I say the federal oversight is necessary. I would like to see more federal oversight across the country,” said Tatem. 

Roy Tatem Jr., Civic Engagement Director for the Arizona NAACP

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