CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) – Friday marked the 155th anniversary of when the final group of slaves was freed in Texas, marking the vacation Juneteenth. So, on Friday individuals in Charleston rallied in celebration of the vacation, in addition to in help of the Black Lives Matter motion.
“In mild of all the things occurring the previous few months, we simply thought it was actually essential to catch the wave whereas it’s right here,” mentioned Jasmyne Grey, an occasion organizer.
Grey, together with different occasion organizers, labored to assist proceed the motion at Magic Island on Friday. She mentioned the aim of the occasion was to not solely rejoice and honor Juneteenth but in addition educate individuals on Black historical past as a complete and set up higher communication between the neighborhood and police.
“Black historical past extends previous Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks we have to embrace all of this historical past and it’s not only for black individuals we would like white, black, brown, yellow no matter you’re to only come out and be taught aside our historical past which can also be aside of American historical past.”
The Charleston Police Division, Fireplace Division, Mayor Amy Goodwin and different metropolis leaders had been on the occasion. Charleston Police went round talking with individuals on the occasion to attempt to open that line of communication.
“We get out right here, get just a little face-to-face (motion),” mentioned Chief James Hunt. “We had been carrying title tags, let individuals name me by my first title and start to develop the relationships which might be wanted to make us that cohesive neighborhood that stays robust.”
Grey mentioned having the neighborhood and police collect and talk with each other is a key think about making change occur.
“That approach in a month or two we are able to have a softball or basketball recreation with the neighborhood and cops,” Grey informed WSAZ. “And so they can drive down the road and be on a primary title foundation and it doesn’t must be a hostile surroundings.”
Many individuals attended the occasion, some holding indicators, others carrying shirts however all with the identical message.
“I’m sixteen and on a regular basis I’ve to fret that what my mother or my brother goes to stroll out and so they’ll by no means stroll again in. Or identical with me, after I’m hanging out with my associates, is it going to be the final time I see my associates,” mentioned Alvyana Robinson.
Occasion organizers additionally helped facilitate conversations on the occasion to make sure individuals had been open with one another and everybody understood their similarities and variations.
“We don’t must sort out all the things proper now however simply getting them to construct some sort of relationship,” Grey mentioned.
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