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Dear Mayor Murillo and Elected Officials,
Our country is in turmoil. We hold that everyone is born deserving of respect; that life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are among our unalienable rights.
Yet what some of us take for granted, others never experience.
We live in a world where the lives the black people, queer and trans people, disabled people, women, minorities and many others are never afforded these basic conditions that we call rights.
We live in a world where the idea that black lives matter is considered “political” and controversial.
We can do better.
I urge the City of Santa Barbara to take immediate action.
• Join cities and counties across America by declaring racism a public health emergency.
• Adopt a formal resolution condemning police brutality.
• Show support towards our black community by formally supporting an annual Juneteenth Celebration. This day, also known as Freedom Day, celebrates the emancipation of the last remaining black slaves in the Confederacy.
• Protect and preserve our black landmarks.
• Demand transparency and accountability from the Santa Barbara Police and Sheriff Departments. Demand that policy prioritizes de-escalation over the use of force.
• Create a civilian oversight of law enforcement review board composed of members selected by the community.
We live in a world with a shameful past of racism, fascism, and white supremacy. A past that many choose to ignore and refuse to acknowledge.
Be better than the world you were born into.