COATESVILLE, PA — A peaceful demonstration is planned in the City of Coatesville for Thursday, June 4. It will commence at 11 a.m. just beyond the bridge located near the intersection of Lincoln Highway and 13th Avenue and end at the Coatesville Police Department, according to Michael Trio, Coatesville City Manager. “While our residents and visitors come together to recognize and mourn the tragic death of George Floyd, we are uniting to build a mission to end racial injustice and marginalization, and create an environment based on respect, equality and inclusion,” says Trio.
The demonstration is a coordinated effort by outside organizers that have scheduled visits in Lancaster, Malvern, Phoenixville, Uwchlan Township and West Chester.
“We welcome the protestors to our city, but I don’t want the demonstrations stop here,” says Linda Lavender-Norris, Coatesville City Council President. “We have to have a plan in order to effect change. The protest represents freedom of speech and unity during these turbulent times. This is my home and I want residents to know they can speak out and be heard. We should also expose our youth to how our system works and how it should work for them as growing black men and women. Coatesville’s young population is watching, and we have an opportunity to educate them and let them know we stand in solidarity against racism. Our condolences go out to the Floyd family and to all families that have suffered from this kind of pain.”
“This has raised a call to action for police forces across the country to double down on efforts to assure that bias is eradicated, and brutality will not be tolerated,” says Police Chief Jack Laufer. “We have long taken the lead in Coatesville to review every facet of our training, protocols and interactions, with particular sensitivity to consider how our interactions impact those in black and brown communities. They must be equitable and fair to all. Our officers are an integral part of the Coatesville community and take pride in their commitment to support every individual’s rights with dignity and respect.”
“In times like these, it is imperative that we come together to lift and encourage one another,” says State Representative Dan Williams. “The collective community, including law-enforcement and business leaders, will assemble on Thursday to speak and listen to one another. This will allow for both positive expressions and the opportunity to encourage demonstrators to funnel their passion and energy toward creating sustainable action and positive legislation.”
“I would like to see a peaceful demonstration because people do have the right to protest to let the world know that black lives matter,” says Rev. Dr. James Simmons.
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