We at Interfaith Action of Greater Saint Paul are heartbroken and outraged by the killing of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police officers.

We stand in solidarity with our neighbors, guests, and clients who are living in a community where a pandemic and the murder of Mr. Floyd have laid bare stark educational, economic and health disparities.

Dismantling systemic racism—the source of these disparities—is the responsibility of every segment of our community. We stand with our broad interfaith community in saying, “Black lives matter. George Floyd matters.”

We must leverage our collective strength to condemn institutionalized racism in our country and to build new community systems rooted in justice and equity.

We absolutely have the power to change our community. Some say we have to wait for a shiny new program. But we are informed by Ecclesiastes: “There is nothing new under the sun.” At root, people need what they’ve always needed: affordable housing, good jobs, access to healthy food and quality health care, child care, and education, enforcement of legal rights, and a restructured system of policing that is rooted in fairness, compassion, and community well-being.

Interfaith Action commits to continuing and growing its long-term work to mobilize faith communities to provide shelter, food security, tutoring, job coaching, legal services, and more. We will double down on our work to connect people with the support they need to find permanent and affordable housing and livable wage jobs.

As people of many faiths, we know how we show up in this world matters deeply. We share the values of safeguarding lives, caring for our neighbors, and providing for those in need. We know that when we listen to each other, we make better decisions.

We in the interfaith community know how to work hard. But we also need to listen more and to have uncomfortable conversations about the root of our tremendous disparities. And then, we must commit to dismantling the systems that led to the murder of George Floyd.

We at Interfaith Action are ready.