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LA supports Black Lives Matter: Fund human needs, stop repression of protests!

Statement by Centro CSO |
June 6, 2020
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National Guard and cops on LA City Hall steps.
National Guard and cops on LA City Hall steps. (Luis Sifuentes)

Fight Back News Service is circulating the following statement by Centro CSO in Los Angeles, California.

Centro CSO stands in solidarity with Black Lives Matter-LA’s call to protest the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota. They are also working to prosecute all the Minneapolis police officers involved. We also unite with the call to prosecute the LAPD and LA Sheriffs for the hundreds of killings of Black, Chicano and Latino people in LA.

We denounce the current militarization of Los Angeles and repression against protesters. Los Angeles Mayor Garcetti has called the National Guard to patrol LA streets, which already had over 10,000 LAPD police, and thousands of LA County Sheriffs on duty. Under the guise of protecting property, the forces are arresting and suppressing peaceful protesters. Thousands of protesters have been arrested, many shot with hard rubber bullets, brutalized and teargassed. We oppose Mayor Garcetti's proposed LA city budget with more funding for LAPD as they already receive over 50% of the yearly LA city budget. We call to cut the LAPD’s bloated budget.

President Trump on June 1st made provocative, aggressive statements against protesters, threatening to call out the military to suppress the daily protests. Minutes later, peaceful protesters were forcefully pushed, shot with tear gas and rubber bullets, just to clear the way for Trump to walk to a local church. The protesters were not given any warning or order to disperse. The church leaders are outraged because they too, were gassed as they were outside helping protesters.

In Boyle Heights, the community has suffered numerous LAPD killings of young Chicanos as well as a recent brutal beating of Chicano Richard Castillo by Hollenbeck LAPD cop Frank Hernandez. We demand Frank Hernandez be fired. On May 21, a Centro CSO delegation delivered a petition to LAPD Chief Moore to fire officer Hernandez. That afternoon Chief Moore stated that the investigation would be finalized by June 1, 2020. We are still awaiting the results.

Centro CSO will continue to organize, as well as attend local protests, provide updates via our social media, and Fight Back! News.