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Activists reflect on progress one year after George Floyd’s death

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — While the events leading up to George Floyd’s death took place in Minneapolis, the impact was certainly felt here in Indianapolis as activists called for change.

Activists say Floyd’s death was tragic, but it caused people to finally stop and listen.

James Wilson is the CEO of Circle Up Indy and protested in Indianapolis following George Floyd’s death.

“It exacerbated all our efforts. We are focused on socioeconomic trauma and community evolution and what just happened with George Floyd is the epitome of socioeconomic trauma. The whole world is traumatized by what they seen,” Wilson said.

Wilson says more work has been done for equality in the past year than had been done in the past decade.

Israel Solomon chose to do his protesting through art, working on the Black Lives Matter mural and painting a George Floyd mural downtown.

“I am definitely proud to see people speaking up and using their voices of all different genders, races, ages, all different types of backgrounds. I am glad to see that this very unfortunate event has sparked change,” Solomon said.

Perhaps one of the biggest milestones for the movement was when a jury found former police officer Derek Chauvin guilty of murdering George Floyd 11 months after his death.

“It just also reminded me that we have got a long way to go. To be celebrating somebody convicted of something that was so obvious that means we have got a lot of work to do to get things right,” Solomon said.

“I am still angry because the point is not across. It is still a conversation,” Wilson added.

He says locally, he is not satisfied with what he calls small changes that have been made.

“In the United States, yes, there has been some progression of trying to see evolution happen directly and legislation has looked to be passed with the George Floyd Act. Locally, here, we have seen minor things done but there has not been an overhaul. Legislation would not move,” Wilson said.

Local activist groups say their current focus is on legislation that protects all people and reflects a city and state that values equality.

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