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Peaceful protest scheduled for Brookings Friday evening

A Brookings group has scheduled a peaceful protest for Friday evening.

The Justice for Black Lives Demonstration will begin at 6:00 p.m. at the courthouse lawn and then walk a predetermined route with stops at the Post Office, Police Department and City Government Center. It will end back at the courthouse.

On their Facebook page, the group says their expectations for the demonstration are for a “peaceful march to call for an end to systematic police brutality in the country.” It says demonstrators will observe the messaging of peaceful protest.

A release from the City of Brookings and Brookings Police Department says they take what happened in Minnesota personally and are truly saddened by the death of George Floyd. It says the actions taken by the officers in Minneapolis go against the core values of the Brookings Police Department.

The release also states that police leadership met with organizers for the Justice for Black Lives Demonstration group in order to form a partnership with the goal of supporting and conducting a peaceful demonstration. The Police Department will make accommodations, and strive to ensure that there is no confusion about the rights of individuals to express themselves and to assemble lawfully for that purpose.

The release says the City of Brookings stands in solidarity with organizers in Brookings as we address and have conversations regarding the large, complicated issue at hand.

Directly from the release: “As we as a community speak out, let’s convey a strong message – and let’s not let that expression be clouded or diluted. We ask that as a community, let’s hold ourselves to the standards we are advocating for, and be a positive model against that which we reject by assembling peacefully, respectfully, and with integrity. By coming together in protest and peaceful assembly to speak out, we exercise and uphold our constitutional right to rebuke actions of those who abuse their position and badge. We bring conversation and clarity from ignorance, and we lay the foundation for change.”

The release ends with this message, “Our only path forward is the one we walk together.”