For Immediate Release
Contact: Kayla Crow, Educational Development Officer, Anakbayan Long Beach, [email protected]
Anakbayan Long Beach stands in solidarity with the friends, family, and the community of Barry Prak, a Cambodian victim of police brutality. We share in our neighbors’ mourning and express our deepest condolences for another young person of color, a father, and community organizer who was killed by the Long Beach Police Department the morning of June 28th after dropping his children off at school. This follows the 2014 shooting and killing of Cambodian youth Sokha Hor, who LBPD prevented from being visited by his family at the hospital when he was in critical condition.
As a progressive Filipino youth and student organization, we are outraged at the blatant violation of human rights and disregard of human life by local police, not only in this instance, but in the all too long string of deaths and violence our city has seen in the past year alone. When our community experiences wage theft from their low-wage service sector jobs such as in caregiving or restaurant serving and over-policing of our neighborhoods in the Eastside and Westside, Cambodian residents are profiled, killed by police, and even deported from their homes by the government. The Black community in Long Beach experiences the biggest brunt of police brutality by making up over a majority of killings, as well as experiencing constant harassment, profiling and discrimination.
Because of these realities, we also stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement and the Black community. We firmly support their calls for justice against police brutality and racial discrimination. We recognize that the state violence and repression that brutalizes and murders Black and Brown people is in place to protect the power and property of the exploitative ruling class in this country. It is rooted in the same systemic imperialist violence and repression that the Filipino people continue to face in our motherland and locally when they become forced to migrate overseas.
It is the violence, the face of fear, and the tangible tension that hangs across our city because any interaction with police is now, more than ever, a potentially life-and-death situation. The working class and people of color across our city and nation are being continuously attacked by trigger-happy police officers. We must continue to stand in solidarity to resist this oppression and work towards genuine progress and systemic change.
We condemn the long list of killings our streets in Long Beach have seen at the hands of the police department and demand justice for the lives of the children, partners, friends, and parents that have been lost:
Mharloun Verdejo Saycon
Tyler Damon Woods
John Del Real
Below, Anakbayan members join Saturday’s protest against the police killing of Lionel Gibson, Jr., occupying Long Beach streets alongside other organizations.