As mothers and fathers and sisters and brothers, the members of SEIU Local 1991 shared the horror of the nation over the death of Trayvon Martin. As part of the county workforce to which Trayvon Martin’s family belongs, we stood in solidarity with them in seeking justice for their son.
Our pain was amplified when the jury returned a not guilty verdict for George Zimmerman. We were left with this basic fact – an unarmed 17-year-old boy is dead and no one will be held responsible for his death. That is not justice by anyone’s measure.
Now that time has passed, we see a glimmer of encouragement in the gatherings of thousands of people in vigils across this community and this country and in the level of discourse that has emerged. Many of our doctors, nurses and healthcare professionals joined such vigils in their communities. Students and activists are camping out at our state Capitol, where the power to change the culture that led to this tragedy must be turned on.
Let our quiet anger turn to a deep commitment to social justice. Let Trayvon be the last child to be killed by hatred and fear. We are all accountable for our children and for each other.