Thursday 12 November 2020
Green Party Belfast City Councillor Anthony Flynn has commented on the findings of a Policing Board report on the handling of the Black Lives Matters (BLM) protests.
Cllr Flynn, who has lodged a separate complaint with the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland on the policing of the protest, said:
"This report sets out that the PSNI got their policing approach wrong when it came to the BLM protest at Custom house Square earlier this year.
"Community relations may well have been damaged as a result and we must listen to the views of local anti-racism activists when they tell us that policing must do better when it comes to working with people from ethnic minorities.
"We saw a number of protests and gatherings during the course of this pandemic that were permitted and facilitated by PSNI in a way that the BLM protest was not.
"People should not be landed with a criminal record for taking part in a peaceful, socially distanced protest to challenge racism.
"As a society we need to do better when it comes to addressing systemic racism. Don't take that from me. Please listen to the voices of people of colour across Northern Ireland. They've made it clear that racism is rife here and we need our Executive to take the lead on promoting positive race relations and social cohesion."
Sinead McIvor - 07701 302 498