A Movement Against Racism spokesperson estimated that around 70 people were present at the vigilMovement Against Racism

Content Note: This article contains discussion of police violence and racism

Cambridge residents gathered to participate in a local vigil yesterday (22/05) commemorating the one-year anniversary of the death of George Floyd.

George Floyd died on the 25th of May 2020 after a police officer, Derek Chauvin, knelt on his neck for over nine minutes. His death sparked a wave of Black Lives Matter (BLM) protests across the globe. 

The vigil was organised by Movement Against Racism (MAR). A MAR spokesperson estimated that around 70 people were present at today’s vigil.

A MAR spokesperson told Varsity that “MAR had raised the profile of BLM issues and created a space to discuss and learn more about how racism affects people.” They added that “there is still a lot more work to do to bring about real change.”

 At 1pm, activists gathered at Parker's Piece where they spent time reflecting on the year that has passed since Floyd’s death. 

MAR encouraged “discussion in small groups” among those present. Attendees, masked and maintaining social distancing, broke off into small circles to talk, with many individuals bearing flags depicting the BLM logo. 

Activists marched to King’s Parade at 1:30 pm. Individuals played percussive instruments and chanted as they marched behind a Movement Against Racism banner. 

Several speeches were made upon their arrival at King’s Parade. 

One speaker said that “the conviction of Derek Chauvin was a victory, but a very small victory,” whilst another emphasised the need to be “anti-racist and push back against racism.”

A spokesperson for the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) drew links between the current unrest in Palestine and the fight against racism, and stressed that “racisms are all connected even if they are slightly differently manifested.” 


Mountain View

Senate House protesters gather in solidarity with Palestine

Another speaker stated that “we will never get rid of racism as long as we live under capitalism” and added that “we have to stand strong together and fight.”

Following the speeches, MAR encouraged attendees to take the knee on Tuesday (25/05), to further commemorate the one year anniversary of Floyd’s murder. 

The vigil, which was live-streamed on Facebook, ended at around 2.45 pm.