Ben and Jerry’s declared its support for the “defund the police” movement in a tweet marking Juneteenth, the day commemorating the end of U.S. slavery.
“Defund the police, defend Black communities!” the Vermont-based ice cream company said in a tweet Friday. “This #Juneteenth, it’s more important than ever that we dismantle the racist and ineffective model of American policing. Learn more about how defunding the police works and why we so desperately need it.”
The tweet linked to a press release stating the company’s interpretation of “defund the police,” which it says presents the best opportunity yet to transform the U.S. policing model so that “Black Americans and people of color can finally experience and celebrate true freedom.”
“‘Defund the police’ means that we stop spending our tax dollars on so many of the discredited, dangerous, and racist parts of policing and instead invest that money in community-driven solutions that foster real health, peacekeeping, and safety,” Ben and Jerry’s said, citing programs such as affordable housing, child care and mental health services.
“Imagine sending trained, caring professionals to help during a mental-health crisis,” the company said. “Imagine calling on a violence interrupter to help families in conflict. Imagine providing communities with abundant, and much-needed, housing, employment, healthcare, and transportation.”
“Incremental reforms. Promises to do better. Increased training. We’ve tried that” the company said. “But American policing is fundamentally flawed — Band-Aids won’t fix it. So it’s time to do something fundamentally different.”
The statement comes amid a renewed wave of Black Lives Matter protests across the country following the police-custody death of George Floyd.
– The Washington Times – Friday, June 19, 2020