The events of the past month and weekend have been sad, frightening, and infuriating. The culmination of more Black killings at the hands of the police in different parts of the country, resulting in the senseless death of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and so many more requires us all to take bold action to confront the racism that continues to poison our nation. We stand in solidarity with Black and Brown communities and condemn these killings.

There is no doubt that police violence must end, and that police reform must be instituted across our country and right here in our Commonwealth. The United States was founded on white supremacy and in order to root out structural racism, this is a moment for white people to take a deep inner look and reflect on the type of systems of oppression that they have long benefited from at the expense of Black and Brown people. In this painful moment, we are called to deeply recommit to and invest in social and racial justice. We must expose, address, and condemn the racist stereotypes that lead to inadequate opportunities and disenfranchisement for education, housing, jobs, healthcare, even voting. It will take all of us.

Our work starts with safety and justice. No longer should parents of Black and Brown children – no matter how young or old – be afraid for their lives at the hands of those who have taken an oath to protect them. No longer should pregnant Black and Brown people’s lives be in danger because the people who have taken an oath to heal them did not listen to or believe them. Black and Brown people deserve the freedom to live without the threat of violence, and free from discrimination. We must do better and honor the fact that Black Lives Matter.

Not only is eradicating racial inequities the right thing to do, it is critical to the survival of our democracy and for us as a people to move forward stronger and more united than ever before.

We have a moral imperative to right these wrongs and time is of the essence. NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia stands with every person of color and promises to fight alongside our social justice partners and leaders to abolish these inequities and bring about a new day for our country and Commonwealth.

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