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Mocha Moms Response to the Ferguson Report

by Danae Aicher - Mocha Moms National Communications Director

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 
        
CONTACT: Danae Jones Aicher
National Director of Communications       
Mocha Moms, Inc.
804.433.0071
daicher@mochamoms.org
www.mochamoms.org
                               
   Mocha Moms Respond to the U.S. Department of Justice Report on
                                             Ferguson Shooting


  Moms of Color Call on Local Police across the Country to Join Them in Preventing More Tragedies

Upper Marlboro, MD- March 5, 2015- While Mocha Moms, Inc., is disappointed that the U.S. Department of Justice investigation into the shooting death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO does not support civil rights charges against Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, we respect the decision and greatly appreciate the time and resources spent on the investigation. As mothers of black and brown boys, we were most struck by other findings in the report that reaffirm our collective community experience with police, and we call on police departments across the country to work with us to improve the lives of our children.

Among other things, the report found a deeply polarized community in Ferguson, “a community where deep distrust and hostility often characterized interactions between police and area residents,  a community where local authorities consistently approached law enforcement not as a means for protecting public safety but as a way to generate revenue; a community where both policing and municipal court practices were found to be disproportionately harmful to African American residents; a community where this harm frequently appears to stem, at least in part, from racial bias both implicit and explicit.”

“It is evident that, a culture of racial prejudice permeates the criminal justice system and it results not only in police targeting our boys but also in unfortunate and unnecessary tragedies,” said Kuae Mattox, National President of Mocha Moms, Inc. “While the investigation found that Officer Wilson genuinely feared for his life, the question remains: Is this widespread fear of black and brown boys rational or reasonable? As mothers of these boys, we know that fear is unreasonable and we want it to stop.”

Mocha Moms, Inc. calls on local police departments across the country to meet with local Mocha Moms chapters, hear our concerns as Mothers and work with us to prevent more tragedies like the one in Ferguson and others we’ve seen in recent years. We can save the lives of our sons and daughters. We can save further embarrassment and scrambling of police departments, and, together we can save our communities across the nation.

Last year, in response to the Ferguson, MO grand jury’s failure to indict Darren Wilson for the murder of unarmed teen, Michael Brown, Mocha Moms, Inc. organized a #blackboysmatter social media campaign to combat the negative stereotypes of black and brown boys. Moms of color from across the country submitted photos of their sons in an effort to put real faces to, and humanize black and brown boys in America. That social media campaign exceeded 10-million impressions in less than two weeks.

“We will never accept the culture of preconceived notions and stereotypes that drives our sons unfairly and disproportionately into the system,” said Mattox. “We are so tired of our boys being killed. We are so tired of courts failing to recognize the value of our children’s lives. We will continue to teach our children to be respectful. We will continue to teach our children to value themselves and others. But the only way America can truly become the great society we claim ourselves to be is if Americans commit to doing the same, and stop marginalizing and criminalizing our black and brown children.”

Mocha Moms, Inc. is the premiere voice for mothers of color, with 100 chapters in 29 states. Mocha Moms, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that does not discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender or socio-economic level, education, or religion. Anyone who supports the mission and purpose of Mocha Moms, Inc. is welcome to join.


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