This morning, Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala filed criminal charges of first degree murder against East Pittsburgh police officer Michael Rosfield in the killing of Antwon Rose Jr. It is a moment to embrace – an essential first step to win justice for Antwon Rose, Jr. during a time of unceasing grief, heartbreak and intense emotion. Greater than a news headline, a picture or hashtag, we all can see the beautiful light in Antwon Rose, Jr.
New Voices is holding the grief of Black mothers whose Black children go out into the world with no guarantee they will return due to police, state-sanctioned, institutional or community violence. A foundational component of Reproductive Justice is the Human Right to parent your child with the necessary social supports and freedom from violence. This is the lived experiences and lived trauma of Black mothers far too often.
This makes it our responsibility and undying commitment to eradicate intersectional race and gender oppression. We hope that as we continue to build our movement for Reproductive Justice that we can know a time when a Black mother’s child is not senselessly killed by the police.
New Voices for Reproductive Justice stands in solidarity with the family, friends and loved ones of Antwon Rose Jr. who should never have to experience such unspeakable pain and loss. Our hearts are with you and the community of Black women, femmes & girls we serve stand behind you.
It was the inspiring leadership of the Alliance for Police Accountability, a fierce collective of community organizers and the brave activists who made this initial arrest and criminal charges possible. New Voices is grateful for you and all your sacrifices you have made day and night. We offer our ongoing support, resources and solidarity in our shared struggle to end anti-Black racism, police violence and white supremacy. We stand with you for as long as it takes.
To the powers that be, we will dismantle your systems of oppression piece by piece until justice is done. The power belongs to the people. We have the power to fight, organize and vote. And nothing can stop the power of the people.
We implore the entire community to #TrustBlackWomen, to rebuild a stronger Greater Pittsburgh Region where #BlackLivesMatter and for every person who believes in social justice to stand boldly in solidarity with Black communities to win justice for #AntwonRose.