Black Lives Matter: Statement from Hertfordshire Leaders
In light of protests by the Black Lives Matter movement and with further protests planned across the county, all eleven leaders of the district, borough and county councils in Hertfordshire, plus the police and crime commissioner, have today issued a statement.
Introducing the statement, Leader of Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council, Cllr Tony Kingsbury, said:
I am very pleased to stand alongside other council leaders across Hertfordshire in support of BLM. This is a time for listening to our BAME communities and understanding how we can all effect real and permanent change.
"Hertfordshire stands united against every form of discrimination, racism and injustice. The killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis has reminded us once again that we cannot and should not tolerate racism in any form or from any person.
"There are still many injustices to overcome but as leaders in our communities, we have an important role to play in challenging inequality. We will work with our communities to bring about meaningful change. We don't have all the answers yet but we are committed to listening, and to learning how we can most effectively challenge inequality and stamp out injustice.
"Coronavirus has tested our community, and throughout this challenging period of time we have shown our strength, resilience and support for each other, irrespective of our differences.
"Sadly we are still seeing many Coronavirus infections and deaths in this country, and the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on people who are from BAME communities has been deeply worrying.
"We support the right for peaceful protest but it is vital that we all stay as safe as possible and maintain social distancing to stop the spread of this virus.
"We would also like to thank our local police and other emergency services for the work they have been doing to keep us all safe over a difficult few months.
"Please stay safe, and know that in Hertfordshire we truly believe that Black Lives Matter."
Cllr Lewis Cocking, Leader of Broxbourne Borough Council
Cllr Andrew Williams, Leader of Dacorum Borough Council
Cllr Linda Haysey, Leader of East Herts Council
Cllr Morris Bright, Leader of Hertsmere Borough Council
Cllr Martin Stears-Handscomb, Leader of North Herts District Council
Cllr Chris White, Leader of St Albans City and District Council
Cllr Sharon Taylor, Leader of Stevenage Borough Council
Cllr Sara Bedford, Leader of Three Rivers District Council
Peter Taylor, Elected Mayor of Watford
Cllr Tony Kingsbury, Leader of Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council
Cllr David Williams, Leader of Hertfordshire County Council
David Lloyd, Police and Crime Commissioner for Hertfordshire