Second Black Lives Matter protest planned in Peterborough

The Black Lives Matter protest in Cathedral Square last month.The Black Lives Matter protest in Cathedral Square last month.
The Black Lives Matter protest in Cathedral Square last month.
A silent, ‘sit-in’ Black Lives Matter protest is to be held in Peterborough today (July 25).

The protest will be taking place in Cathedral Square in the city centre from 1-2pm.

The gathering will be the city’s second Black Lives Matter Protest - the first took place on June 6 and hundreds of people took part.

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Co-organiser Paige Fraser said: “We feel that, as much attention as the last protest got, people are still not listening or hearing us.

“There was an incident three days ago in London where a black man was unarmed, detained on the floor and the officer in question continued to put his knee on the unarmed man’s neck.

“The problem is the world is very aware of the tragic murder of George Floyd. So the fact the officer can make mistakes such as this, when there is so much racial tension out there at the moment, is insane to us.

“Black men are still getting stopped and searched at a forty times higher rate than their white counterparts. The police need retraining when it comes to racial discrimination and who they are classing as criminal.

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“These incidents cannot keep happening so we plan to peacefully sit with our signs and our presence in the hopes that the police will not only listen to what our community needs, but to start implementing these ideas to ensure a safer environment for all of us but especially the black community.”

Organisers have said the protest will follow social distancinga with those taking part keeping two metres apart and with the mandatory wearing of face masks.

Co-organiser Saskia Cole hopes that it will be ‘even easier than last time to ensure safety.’

Saskia said: “I literally just had to do something seeing another man being knelt on in London.

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“It was triggering to be honest and I said to the guys we needed this but I said we needed a silent one.

“I think that will make a statement in itself, that we aren’t being heard and aren’t feeling any change. Hopefully the message will come across.”

The protest advice from organisers includes no sharing of food and drink, no embracing or contact outside of households and masks to be worn at all times.

Black Lives Matter Peterborough have also asked those joining to bring sanitiser or gloves, and for there to be no hate speech, no violence, no anti-police signs using bad language, no all lives matter signs, no drugs and no alcohol.

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The city council has been informed of the planned protest and Chief Inspector Nicholas Church from Cambridgeshire Police said: “We are aware of a planned Black Lives Matter protest in Peterborough on Saturday (25 July) and are liaising with the organisers to facilitate further peaceful protest. We are also engaging with the local community to offer reassurance around the event.”

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