MONROE – All must “work harder, speak louder and care more” to guarantee racism and social injustice have no home in Monroe, Mayor Gerald Tamburro said.
The mayor said he was proud of the young adults, all graduates of Monroe Township High School, who organized a peaceful protest and rally at Thompson Park on June 7 in the wake of George Floyd’s death, as well as everyone who stood beside them.
Floyd, an African American man, died after Minneapolis Police Department Officer Derek Chauvin, a white man, knelt on his neck for more than eight minutes after pinning him to the ground during an arrest on May 25. Chauvin was charged with second-degree murder on May 29. Three other officers, Tou Thao, Thomas Lane and J. Alexander Kueng, were charged with aiding and abetting Floyd’s murder on June 3.
“Like many of you, I am deeply saddened over the senseless death of George Floyd,” Tamburro said. “Over the last 10 days, we have watched peaceful protests and destructive riots. We have seen division when what we need to see is unity.”
Tamburro said the Monroe community is diverse, made up of all races, faiths and nationalities.
“We know that we all must work harder, speak louder and care more to guarantee that racism and social injustice have no home in Monroe Township,” he said. “Monroe is filled with smart, wonderful people who I believe wish to build a kind, caring and unbiased community filled with people of all colors, black, white and brown. Our diversity is our strength.”
Members of Indivisible of Monroe Township gathered with hundreds from the township and surrounding communities in support of the Black Lives Matter movement at Thompson Park. Indivisible members hosted a table providing water for rally attendees and offering volunteer opportunities, including assisting with its “Postcard to Voters” campaign to help get out the vote.
Schools Superintendent Dori Alvich sent correspondence to families about the social unrest.
“As educators it is our duty to inform and encourage students to accept differences, and value the strengths of different cultures and backgrounds, not fear or discriminate against them,” she said in the letter. “Monroe Township Schools deliver a diverse and culturally sensitive curriculum for its students, and we also implement the same cultural values and responsiveness in the administration, faculty, and staff.”
Alvich said she has asked Michele Critelli, supervisor of guidance, to work with the guidance department to provide resources to assist parents in addressing issues of racism.