Statement from Council President Shannon G. Hardin on the Guilty Verdict for the Murder of George Floyd
[COLUMBUS, OH] The following statement can be attributed in full, or in part, to Columbus City Council President Shannon G. Hardin:
"Today’s guilty verdict doesn’t bring back George Floyd. It doesn’t bring back Andre Hill, Casey Goodson Jr., or those killed by law enforcement across our nation. But it does give us hope for accountability and better policing in the future. The bridges of trust are tenuous. However, we can rebuild them to ensure safety in all our neighborhoods.
While this moment of accountability is a critical step in the march for equal justice, it doesn’t prevent the next unnecessary shooting or use of force. The path to lasting reform is to reduce the number of dangerous interactions between residents and law enforcement. We must find new ways to address mental health, substance abuse, homelessness, and nonviolent offenders. Our vision for an Office of Alternative Crisis Response is the necessary next step. We’ve asked law enforcement to do too much for too long, and truly reimagining public safety demands deep systematic change.
There is a long road ahead, not only for me and my peers but also for the next generation of black children like my nephew Christian, growing up in Columbus, where too many view him as a threat instead of the beautiful human he is becoming. Tomorrow we start marching again to make Columbus’ safer for all the people of color and to show a nation how to truly be better at the promise of life, liberty and equal justice.”