“Today and every day we stand in solidarity with George Floyd’s family, friends and community who feel pain and fear
about his untimely death at the hands of Minneapolis police”, said Green Party Co-leader and Māori Development
spokesperson Marama Davidson.
“We acknowledge the broader exasperation and anger of black and brown communities in the US who have lost yet another
life to systemic racism. Let us not forget that Ahmaud Arbery, another black man, was recently shot whilst running in
“These deaths occur within a justice system with a deeply imbedded culture of systemic racism and violence. These deaths
are built on centuries of injustices and social inequities.
“The disease of state based discrimination is not constrained to American borders. We must acknowledge that here in New
Zealand, at every single step of the justice system, Māori face increased discrimination”, Green Party Justice
spokesperson Golriz Ghahraman said.
“This means that Māori experience more arrests, more prosecutions, longer jail sentences, more brutality, and deaths,
than Pākehā in similar circumstances.
“As a nation, we must collectively come together and reflect on how we build a new normal where all New Zealanders are
treated equally and with respect”, Marama Davidson said.
“We must be actively working to see how we can create a justice system that all New Zealanders trust. Part of this
process is decreasing the ability for police to be armed with deadly firearms.
“Armed police officers were recently trialled, in areas with predominantly Māori, Pasifika, and lower socio-economic
communities. During this time tensions escalated in the area.
“The Green Party, Māori leaders and the local community all raised concerns during this trial. As a mother with Māori
teenagers living in a trial area I genuinely feared for the safety of my two sons.
“The police are now evaluating this trial and recommendations will soon be taken to the public for consultation. I urge
the community to speak out strongly against further implementation of this trial when that opportunity arrives, while we
push to demilitarise our police force from within government”, Golriz Ghahraman said.
“The death of George Floyd is being felt around the world, encapsulating raw injustice that comes from centuries of
oppression. We must learn from his death and prioritise the work to eliminate systemic racism from our police and
justice systems. This is an essential step towards keeping our communities safer.”