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Jacksonville demands People’s Budget, justice for Jacob Blake

By Neal Jefferson |
August 31, 2020
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acksonville protest demands People’s Budget and justice for Jacob Blake.
acksonville protest demands People’s Budget and justice for Jacob Blake. (Fight Back! News/staff)

Jacksonville, FL - On Saturday August 29, the Jacksonville Community Action Committee organized a drive-in protest to demand a People’s Budget, a Jacksonville Police Accountability Council (JPAC) and an end to the Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights (LEOBOR). Protesters were joined by the families of Reginald Boston and Leah Baker; all of whom were killed by Jacksonville Sheriff Office (JSO) cops. Protesters also stood in solidarity with protestors in Kenosha, demanding Justice for Jacob Blake.

To ensure the safety of protesters in the midst of COVID-19 outbreaks in Florida, a drive-in protest was held. Over 150 cars and dozens on foot filled the grassy lot across the street from the Jacksonville Sheriff Office to stand in solidarity and demand justice for victims of police brutality.

The Jacksonville Community Action Committee demanded a budget that reallocates millions of dollars from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office to public services and programs. The People’s budget stands up in opposition to Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry’s budget proposal, which gives almost half a billion dollars to the Jacksonville Sheriff Office. The People’s Budget called for a large reallocation of city spending to create living wages and union jobs, large investments in the Black community, including public transportation and other social safety net programs such as mental health services.

Yvonno Kemp, the mother of Reginald Boston, gave a powerful speech. She spoke out about her son’s death and the need to bring an end to police terror in Jacksonville.

Protesters chanted, “No justice no peace, no racist police” and “Indict! Convict! send these killer cops to jail”

Calls for a Jacksonville Police Accountability Council continued throughout the rally, with speakers like Wells Todd of Take em Down Jax calling for community control of the police in Jacksonville.

“After listening to parents publicly grieve over the loss of their children, I don’t know how anyone could support more money to JSO. It was JSO that forced those families into grief. It’s time for communities to be properly served. It’s time for the People’s Budget,” says Monica Gold of JCAC.

Saturday’s action demonstrated that Jacksonville activists are only increasing in momentum, as they continue the struggle to see their demands met. Follow more on the Jacksonville Community Action Committee at https://jaxtakesaction.org.

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