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George Floyd legacy – US policing under fire: Live updates | George Floyd protests News



  • United States congressional Democrats plan to unveil a sweeping package of legislation to combat police violence and racial injustice after two weeks of protests across the nation sparked by George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis police custody.
  • The public will be able to view George Floyd’s casket on Monday in his hometown of Houston, the final stop in a series of memorials in his honour.
  • Floyd’s funeral will be held on Tuesday, followed by burial, where he will be laid to rest next to his mother, Larcenia Floyd.


Monday, June 8:

16:50 GMT – Denver fully bans chokeholds, requires report for aimed guns

Denver’s police department announced it is changing policies regarding its use of force and body cameras.

In a statement released on Sunday the department said it has banned the use of chokeholds with no exceptions effective immediately. Previously, the practice was barred except in lethal encounters, The Denver Post reported.

The department also said that officers who intentionally point their gun at someone will be required to notify a supervisor and file a report to help collect data on such incidents. Members of its SWAT team will also have to activate their body cameras when they are performing tactical operations, the department said.

16:25 GMT – Crossfit founder apologises for tweet after Reebok split

CrossFit founder Greg Glassman has apologised for a tweet that equated Floyd’s killing to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In response to a tweet by research firm Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation that classified racism and discrimination as public health issue, Glassman, who is also the chief executive of CrossFit, had posted, “It’s FLOYD-19”.

The fallout was fast. Adidas AG-owned Reebok ended its 10-year-old partnership with CrossFit and updated its US homepage in support of the ‘Black Lives Matter’ campaign.

In a statement on Twitter, Glassman said: “I, CrossFit HQ, and the CrossFit community will not stand for racism. I made a mistake by the words I chose yesterday. My heart is deeply saddened by the pain it has caused. It was a mistake, not racist but a mistake.”

16:05 GMT – Officer charged in Floyd’s death has 1st court appearance

Derek Chauvin, the Minneapolis police officer charged with second-degree murder in George Floyd’s death is scheduled to make his first court appearance. He is also charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

Derek Chauvin

Former Minnesota police officer Derek Chauvin posing for a booking photograph at Hennepin County Jail in Minneapolis, Minnesota, US [Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office/Handout via Reuters] 

Chauvin is being held at a state prison in Oakdale. The other three officers – J. Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao – are charged with aiding and abetting. They remain in the Hennepin County jail on $750,000 bond.

16:00 GMT – Floyd’s casket arrives at Houston church ahead of public viewing

The body of George Floyd arrived at a church in Houston for a final public memorial.

His body arrived in a gold-colored casket that was escorted to The Fountain of Praise church by Houston police. A six-hour viewing that is open to the public was scheduled to begin in the afternoon.

George Floyd

The casket of George Floyd is set inside the church for a memorial service in Raeford, NC [Ed Clemente/Pool via AP] [Daylife] 

Before the casket arrived, workers outside the church assembled a large floral arrangement with white roses on one side in the shape of a heart and with the initials “BLM” for Black Lives Matter created from blue roses and placed on top of the heart. The other side of the floral arrangement was made up of red roses and appeared to be in the shape of a raised fist.

15:00 GMT – Democrats unveil ‘Justice in Policing’ act to make wide-ranging changes to US police policy

The legislation address excessive use of force, qualified immunity and racial profiling, answering calls from protesters across the country after the death of George Floyd and other Black Americans while in police custody.

“It will demilitarize the police by limiting the transfer of military weaponry to state and local police departments,” said Nancy Pelosi, the speaker of the US House of Representatives. 

It also proposes banning ‘no-knock’ warrants, that allow police officers to enter a residence without warning. The legislation would require support by US Republicans who control the upper house of the legislature. 

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuuck Schumer (D-NY) kneel with Congressional Democrats during a moment of silence to honor George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbe

US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer kneel with Congressional Democrats during a silence to honor George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and others. [Jonathan Ernst/Reuters]

14:20 GMT – US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi leads silence for George Floyd

Members of the US Congress went down on one knee in Emancipation Hall in the US Capitol building, in silence for eight minutes 46 seconds – the length of time that George Floyd spent pinned down by three police officers on a Minneapolis street corner. He was pronounced dead shortly afterwards. 

Floyd’s death has sparked worldwide protests that call for an end to police brutality and what many protestors call systemic racism in US police forces. 

Demonstrators have been calling for the defunding or dismantling of police forces and a shifting of their budgets to community, education or other programmes.

13:00 GMT – Congressional Democrats to unveil sweeping US police reform proposal 

US congressional Democrats plan to unveil a sweeping package of legislation to combat police violence and racial injustice.

The proposal is expected to ban police chokeholds and racial profiling, require nationwide use of body cameras, subject police to civilian review boards and abolish the legal doctrine known as qualified immunity, which protects police from civil litigation, according to congressional sources.

Defund the police

A sign painted by protesters reading ‘Defund the Police’, painted next to a Black Lives Matter sign, near the White House in Washington, DC, the US [Joshua Roberts/Reuters] 

It is unclear whether the proposal will receive support from Republicans, who control the US Senate. Their support and that of Republican President Donald Trump would be needed for the measure to become law.

12:45 GMT – Trump opposes police defunding 

Protesters are pushing to “defund the police” after the death of George Floyd and other Black Americans killed by law enforcement.

Their chant has become a rallying cry – and a stick for President Donald Trump to use on Democrats as he portrays them as soft on crime.

Trump has said he opposes the idea, and is set to meet with members of law enforcement at the White House on Monday afternoon.

Supporters say it is not about eliminating police departments or stripping agencies of all of their money. They say it is time for the country to address systemic problems in policing in the US and spend more on what communities across the country need, like housing and education.

Al Jazeera’s podcast The Take spoke to protesters. Listen here. 

12:30 GMT – Houston to hold six-hour public viewing of Floyd’s casket

Mourners will be able to view George Floyd’s casket Monday in his hometown of Houston, the final stop in a series of memorials in his honour.

A six-hour viewing will be held at The Fountain of Praise church in southwest Houston. The viewing is open to the public, though visitors will be required to wear face masks and gloves to comply with coronavirus-related guidelines.

New York City

Demonstrators holding a Black Lives Matter banner during a protest against racial inequality in the aftermath of the death in Minneapolis police custody of George Floyd, at Grand Army Plaza in the Brooklyn borough of New York City, New York, the US [Eduardo Munoz/Reuters]

Floyd’s funeral will be Tuesday, followed by burial at the Houston Memorial Gardens cemetery in suburban Pearland, where he will be laid to rest next to his mother, Larcenia Floyd.

See Sunday’s coverage here.

Made with Flourish

12:25 GMT – New York City mayor announces police reforms including shifting of funding from to youth programmes

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Sunday a series of police reforms that he said were part of a “transformative movement.”

He said funding would be shifted from the New York Police Department (NYPD) to youth and social services, moving the enforcement for street vending out of the police department to a civilian agency, and adding community ambassadors to the NYPD to serve as liaisons between officers and New Yorkers.

“People did not protest for the sake of protest. They protest to achieve change, and now we must deliver that change,” de Blasio said.

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Biden, Johnson talk, but did they discuss US-UK trade deal? | Brexit News



UK says leaders discussed ‘benefits of a potential free-trade deal’, but US statement makes no mention of one.

U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson and U.S. President Joseph Biden struck different tones on the prospects of a trade deal between their respective countries, as Johnson became the first European leader to receive a phone call since Biden’s inauguration.

The U.K. statement on the call, which covered issues such as strengthening bilateral ties, collective defense and fighting climate change, also mentioned discussions of “the benefits of a potential free-trade deal between our two countries.” A statement released by the White House didn’t mention a discussion of trade.

Reaching a new trade accord with the U.S. now that the U.K. has exited the European Union is a top priority for Johnson, who’s looking to re-shape Britain’s global relations and show the benefits of having a trade policy independent from the EU. The U.S. is already the U.K.’s largest single-country trading partner, with trade between the two worth 221 billion pounds ($302 billion) in 2019, according to data from the British government.

A narrow time window is closing for the quick resolution of a trade accord: Biden needs the Senate to confirm Katherine Tai, his pick to be U.S. Trade Representative, and also faces the expiration of fast-track trade negotiating power delegated to the president by Congress. That ability, known as Trade Promotion Authority, expires July 1, and Biden would need to be close enough to a deal to notify Congress by April 1.

The prospect of a trade pact with the U.S. has been politically contentious in Britain, over concerns such as the U.K. opening its markets to U.S. agricultural products which may be made to lower animal-welfare standards. Outgoing U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said in December that access for American farmers would be an important part of any deal.

A trade accord with the U.S. may also bring limited benefits to Johnson’s Britain. The U.K. government’s own impact assessment of a deal said it would boost long-term GDP by 0.16%, provided there was a full liberalization of tariffs and a 50% reduction in non-tariff measures. Leaving the EU with a thin trade deal — as Johnson agreed on Dec. 24 — would be expected to reduce long-run GDP growth by 4%, according to the Office for Budget Responsibility.

The U.K.’s Department for International Trade said talks with the U.S. are at an “advanced stage” and they are on track for a “comprehensive agreement.”

“Continued technical discussions have taken place between officials to ensure that both sides are in a good position to move forwards as the new administration begins its work,” the DIT said in a statement.

Trade issues aside, Biden pledged to work closely with Johnson as the U.K. hosts both the G-7 and the United Nations Climate Change conference this year, according to a statement from the White House.

Johnson “warmly welcomed” Biden’s decision to have the U.S. rejoin the Paris Agreement on reducing greenhouse emissions, abandoned by President Donald Trump. He also praised Biden for renewing U.S. support for the World Health Organization and the Covax program to support the equitable distribution of Covid-19 vaccines.

The two leaders also expressed their support for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and for shared values to promote human rights, according to the U.K. statement.

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