Breonna Taylor deserved to lead a full, healthy life.
Breonna Taylor deserved to lead a full and healthy life. But she was murdered. While she slept, three men protected by the state broke into her house and murdered her. Today, government officials held a press conference to tell the world that her murder was justified. No one will be held accountable.
Through their decision, the Kentucky Grand Jury unconscionably declared to every young Black person in America that they could be murdered at any time and that their government will defend their murderers. This is either a disgusting failure of our system or it is another example of white supremacy doing what it was meant to do–oppress. Either way, young people won’t ignore it. They will fight even harder to change it. At Advocates for Youth, we will remain steadfastly by their sides.
As a reproductive and sexual health and rights organization, we’re often told to “stay in our lane.” This is our lane. Young people’s sexual health and rights are constantly threatened by white supremacy, state violence, and attacks on bodily autonomy. Young people’s sexual health and rights are inextricably entwined with racial, economic and social justice.
This is our lane.
We’ve given witness to countless incidents of police brutality and total disregard for Black people’s lives. There has been an alarming rise in all forms of racially motivated violence, driven by a President whose rhetoric is overtly white supremacist. We must continue to call for a moral center that values Black people, and recognizes and dismantles systems of oppression, so that we may all one day lead full and healthy lives.
In memory of Breonna Taylor, and all the lives lost to state violence, Advocates for Youth remains steadfastly committed to working alongside youth activists and young leaders to build a better future, one steeped in reproductive and racial justice.
- Advocates for Youth supports non-carceral approaches to public safety. We believe public safety can and should be reimagined, restructured, and radically changed. Our criminal justice system is racist, misogynistic, and violent. In many cities, police departments account for a quarter or more of the city’s entire budget. We believe this money could be better spent on education, housing, transportation, health care, and other resources and opportunities that support Black and Brown communities. Research shows equitable access to these resources helps drive sexual health equity. To tap in more, this guide to Abolition and Reproductive Justice from our Young Womxn of Color for Reproductive Justice Leadership Collective is a great starting point.
- Advocates for Youth urges all schools to remove police officers and defund campus police departments. We need to end white supremacy and ensure Black and Brown young people are safe in schools and communities. If you want to learn how to remove police from your schools, this training featuring the Power U team can help you get started.
- Advocates for Youth believes that young people have the right to protest. Public assembly and protest are rights guaranteed by the Constitution. Tear gas, “kettling,” rubber bullets, and other tactics not only harm young people but escalate violence while doing nothing to address protestor demands. Our free Protester Training Series provides training on direct actions, jail support, digital security, and more.