George Floyd's Family Calls for "Laws to Protect People of Color" During Their White House Visit

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Photo credit: JIM WATSON - Getty Images
Photo credit: JIM WATSON - Getty Images

Members of George Floyd's family met with President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in Washington, D.C., today, on the one-year anniversary of his death by police.

“Being here today is an honor,” Terrence Floyd, a brother of George Floyd, said, per The Washington Post. “To meet with the president and the vice president and for them to show their concern to our family and for them to actually give an ear to our concerns and how we feel on the situation. I feel it was a very productive conversation, and I’m grateful for it.”

Among Floyd's kin in Washington today were his mother, brothers, and his young daughter, Gianna, who famously said, "Daddy changed the world" last year as protests ignited around the country (and the world) following his death. Biden referenced Gianna's words after the meeting, saying Floyd "peacefully unified people of every race and generation to collectively say enough of the senseless killings."

The president went on to urge Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, which calls for major, nationwide police reform that includes ending police chokeholds and no-knock warrants (a tactic that was used in the police shooting that killed Breonna Taylor), and increasing accountability for misconduct, The New York Times reported.

The Floyd family met with the Speaker as Congress debated the legislation. “We will work until we get the job done,” Representative Karen Bass, who coauthored the bill, said, per the Post. “That is the commitment that we are making, I am personally making, to the family.” As the deadline to pass the bill is today, Democrats and Republicans are still negotiating its terms, at the time of writing.

Photo credit: JIM WATSON - Getty Images
Photo credit: JIM WATSON - Getty Images

After meeting with Biden, Harris, and Pelosi, Floyd's family took a moment to advocate for the bill's passing.

“We’re just thankful for what’s going on and we just want this George Floyd Policing Act to be passed in the future,” said brother Philonise Floyd, per the Post. “If you can make federal laws to protect the bird which is the Bald Eagle, you can make federal laws to protect people of color.”

President Biden and Vice President Harris had been in touch with the Floyds prior to their White House visit. Just last month, they called the family after former police officer Derek Chauvin was found guilty on all three charges against him for George Floyd's murder.

"In George's name and memory, we are going to make sure that his legacy is intact and that history will look back at this moment and know that it was an inflection moment," Harris told them over the phone.

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