SARASOTA, Fla. (WFLA) – Over the weekend, passionate demonstrations took place across Sarasota and Manatee counties. Fortunately, the protests remained peaceful.
“I was happy that it went well,” said Trevor Harvey.
Harvey is the president of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People or NAACP branch in Sarasota County.
“Those of us that are of color, especially the African-American community, we are angry. We are in disbelief that we continue to see these senseless murders at the hands of law-enforcement officers,” said Harvey.
Harvey feels the death of George Floyd brought many people across the nation to a turning point. Over the past several days, demonstrations have taken place in cities across the country, some turning to violence.
“We don’t stand behind rioting, looting ,car bombing, and burning down grocery stores. We don’t support any of that behavior. We do support peaceful protests, peaceful rallies, peaceful demonstrations, but at the same time, you have to understand when these things continue to happen and no punishment is rendered at the hands of these perpetrators, there is a boiling point that happens,” said Harvey
The local NAACP president feels in order to see real change, policy needs to be addressed. “Here in Sarasota, we are already developing a task force to go in and look at local law-enforcement policies and procedures. We are going to look at all of these things and begin to make recommendations to our local law-enforcement agencies and things that we feel need to be addressed,” explained Harvey.
In the heart of Newtown in Sarasota, sits April Glasco’s nonprofit organization. Second Chance Last Opportunity has been a part of the neighborhood for decades serving hundreds of families every week. Families that Glasco says have grown frustrated.
“They are tired, they are fed up,” said Glasco.
The nonprofit CEO tells 8 On Your Side she’s worried how injustice today will affect tomorrow’s generation. “I did not sleep last night because I was too busy worrying about our young people and the end result of how it’s going to affect them,” said Glasco.
Harvey says it will take the entire community to enact change.
“We need to see our white brothers and sisters stand with us and stand out and speak out and call racism and bigotry and supremacy what it is,” said Harvey.