Emanuel Cleaver

07/09/2020 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 07/09/2020 13:07

Helsinki Commissioners Emanuel Cleaver, Gwen Moore, Alcee Hastings, and Marc Veasey Lead Call for Comprehensive Action to Address anti-Black Racism Abroad

(Washington, D.C.) - In a bicameral letter to the President of the European Commission, the Black members of the Helsinki Commission along with 35 other Members of United States Congress, including the Congressional Black Caucus Chair and other Helsinki Commissioners, call for a sweeping plan of action following the European Parliament's Juneteenth Day resolution supporting protests against racism and police brutality. The letter also urges an immediate inquiry into an altercation involving a Black Member of the European Parliament and a Belgian police officer. In response, the Commissioners released the following statements:

'Recently, we have seen a troubling rise in racism and police brutality around the world,' said Helsinki Commissioner Emanuel Cleaver. 'I'm comforted to see the European Parliament and the people of Europe standing with Americans as we seek to abolish the systemic racism that has plagued our planet for far too long. As we stand united in the face of this age-old foe, now is the time for concrete action to root out racism in every corner of the globe.'

'I am encouraged by the European Parliament's resolution supporting protests against racism and police brutality. I would like to see these efforts built upon with meaningful and comprehensive action that addresses the widespread racism and discrimination Black Europeans and people of African descent experience on a day-to-day basis,' said Helsinki Commissioner Gwen Moore.

'Since convening the 2009 Black European Summit at the European Parliament, it is heartening to see the growing solidarity of this resolution and the opportunity it presents for joint U.S.-EU commitments to end systemic racism,' said Helsinki Commission Chairman Alcee Hastings.

'I applaud the European Parliament's resolution that denounces anti-black racism and police brutality,' said Helsinki Commissioner Marc Veasey. 'We must work together as a global community to create comprehensive solutions that will finally dismantle the systemic oppression that has caused too many Black and Brown lives to be lost.'

You can read the full text of the official letter here.

Emanuel Cleaver, II is the U.S. Representative for Missouri's Fifth Congressional District, which includes Kansas City, Independence, Lee's Summit, Raytown, Grandview, Sugar Creek, Blue Springs, Grain Valley, Oak Grove, North Kansas City, Gladstone, Claycomo, and all of Ray, Lafayette, and Saline Counties. He is a member of the exclusive House Financial Services Committee; Chairman of the House Subcommittee on National Security, International Development, and Monetary Policy; member of the Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress; member of the Committee on Homeland Security; and a Senior Whip of the Democratic Caucus. For more information, please contact Matt Helfant at 202-590-0175 or [email protected] A high-resolution photo of Congressman Cleaer is available here.