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What has changed since George Floyd was murdered 2 years ago?

George Floyd was murdered just over 2 years ago on May 25

On the 25 May 2020, the murder of George Floyd in the streets at the hands of the police sent reverberations around the world.

Anti-racism protests in just over 40 countries in the height of a global pandemic showed the support of millions against discrimination.

With 25th May 2022 marking two years since his death, what has happened and changed since then?

In the state where Floyd was killed, Minneapolis, there were serious calls to disband the police and invest money in community services and create a new system of public safety, which never happened and instead $6M was invested into recruiting new police officers.

America has still tried to work on their policing, however, and a bill that would reform the police which held George Floyd's name died in the Republican led senate when Donald Trump was president.

'I cant breathe' was the phrase Floyd said as Derek Chauvin leant on his neck for nine minutes, leading to the officer being found guilty of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

Justice was served and the officer will spend over 22 years in prison on a murder sentence, a punishment that should make any police officer think twice about their methods of detainment and treatment of black people.

The data says otherwise though as a report collected by the Washington Post has showed 1,055 people were killed by police in 2021 with 27% of those being black. Based on the population, this makes black people twice as likely to be killed by the police.

The protests around the world have obviously shown the solidarity of millions, however they have never got into the roots of police brutality and perhaps made the police go silent on the issue as the talking is being done for them.

The media's coverage of George Floyd was non stop, however, it appears when less people are talking about it or other perceived more important things come into play people's consciousness decreases.

Talking is very different to action and until a real reform of the policing institutions of America happens, the issue will sadly and inevitably continue.

President Joe Biden has started work on reform on the 2 year anniversary, as an executive order has been signed which directs federal agencies to revise their use of force policies, banning chokeholds and promoting de-escalation techniques.

Police will now be required to carry out anti-bias training and the order has called for a new national standard for accrediting police departments, a national tracking system of police misconduct and requires agencies to implement new tools to screen for bias, unlawful violence and white supremacist views.

The order should please civil rights groups as it appears a solid step towards reducing police brutality in the country, and maybe lead to other nations revising their policing law.

Within England, there has definitely been more discussion about the issue with sport taking a primary role within this.

Players in various competitions in football take a knee before games two years on Floyd's death and the sport is arguably one of the leaders of the discussion surrounding racism, inequality and discrimination.

Despite some protests to doing the knee at the start, it has become commonplace in football now and is welcomed by applause of supporters - however it can be said the true meaning behind it has been lost and the power it is supposed to represent has not been translated into action or change.

Malcom Hirst of Love Football Hate Racism believes there is more awareness around racism since Floyd's death but there is more that can be done:

"There is a heightened awareness of the issues that surround racism, but the narrative of a culture war is still being propagated.

"Organisations and institutions have become better placed to implement policies, but the danger is that they will fail to have an impact and bring about the necessary structural change."

Hirst also believes Biden's executive order is a good step:

"It is a good first step towards tackling what is seen as systemic racism in the American justice system.

"There is more to be done and it will be important that any changes are embedded within the police force."

It has taken two years but just maybe the order will go down in history as a turning point in the fight against police brutality.

As Floyds daughter said to Joe Biden the first time they met, "My daddy is gonna change the world".


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