Center for Media at Risk Statement on George Floyd Protests

Black lives matter.

The Center for Media at Risk at the University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg School for Communication believes that every platform can and must do its part to offset injustice.

We have taken a moment of silence to remember George FloydBreonna TaylorTony McDadeNina PopAhmaud Arbery and every Black child and adult murdered at the hands of police or armed civilians. We acknowledge that these murders fall within a history of violence and indifference; video evidence has merely brought to the surface what was long buried or ignored.

We have taken a pause out of respect for Black lives and voices, to amplify what matters. We have mobilized to join the millions flooding streets around the world to demand and fight for justice. Now we must organize. 

Last week, the Center suspended its planned events to rethink how to better provide resources and programming that support Black communities at risk and educate the larger public about the role of media practitioners in times of crisis. 

The efforts of journalists and the many others who cover, document and bear witness to inequity have also reached a new level of visibility. And yet those efforts are marred by violence and intimidation.

We condemn the harassment, retaliation, assault, arrest and other acts that obstruct media practitioners and civilians from holding their civil institutions to account. We stand with CNN’s Omar Jimenez in Minneapolis, with WHYY’s Avi Wolfman-Arent and The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Kristen Graham, with WAVE-TV reporter Kaitlin Rust, with countless unnamed documenters around the world. 

The Center is committed to supporting Black media, Black scholarship and above all—Black lives.

Black Lives Matter.