Work Towards Peace Needs To Follow the Derek Chauvin Verdict

Statement by DSC Executive Committee

As we reflect on the guilty verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial, our sadness for both the family of George Floyd and for Officer Chauvin gives way to an even louder call —that police practice around the use of deadly force needs urgent and effective reform.  

There are countless instances where overreaction on the part of the police during routine police work has ended with the tragic death of an innocent person, usually a person of color. While the police must be given the resources and training to carry out their role in public safety, they cannot be permitted to exercise a militarized form of police work. 

We urge local police chiefs and civic leaders to work to de-escalate the fear and hatred in their local communities that leads to violence. Community building efforts need real commitment and funding. In our own neighborhoods and communities, we, as Dominican women, are working to confront our own white privilege and are searching for ways to bridge the divide of racial inequity.

True peace is possible when citizens can feel safe from fear and when hatred gives way to understanding.  Peace takes hard work and listening to one another.  Are we tired enough of death? Are we ready to see each other with new eyes? With hearts that have broken so many times in so many families, when will we be ready to choose courage over fear?  In the words of President Biden, “We cannot be a safe harbor for hate in this country.”

Our prayer is the prayer of Zachariah in Luke’s Gospel “…guide our feet into the way of peace. “

Dominican Sister Conference Executive Committee:

Janice Brown, OP; Durstyne Farnan, OP; Anne Lythgoe, OP; Maryann McMahon, OP; Pamela Mitchell, OP; Mary Ellen O’Grady, OP; Terry Rickard, OP; Corinne Sanders, OP