Rockaway Press Conference To Denounce Racial Slurs
On Thursday, October 19, 2017 at 6pm, the Rockaway Youth Task Force (RYTF) will host a press conference to demand that the NYPD identify and take action against those responsible for a racial slur written on public property at the Beach 67th Street train station earlier this week. The term, an antiquated and derogatory term for African Americans, was written on a trash can in the area. A local resident posted an image of the vandalism on social media on Monday, October 16, 2017. After being made aware of the vandalism, the Rockaway Youth Task Force posted on social media to denounce the act. The organization posted:
"The thousands of New Yorkers who call Rockaway home are no strangers to the divisive forces of race and class. For as long as many can remember, Rockaway has been a segregated community plagued by opposites; rich-poor, white-black, Republican-Democrat. One would hope that in the midst of national discord, we could find commonality in that we all call Rockaway home. Unfortunately, our geographic similarities cannot counter the strength of fear, hate, and ignorance that has pervaded the Rockaway Peninsula for decades.
Today, we were angered and saddened to discover a racial slur written on public property outside of the Beach 67th St train station. At RYTF, we work to create a world that's more just and fair for young people and people of color. We rebuke those who try to demean others and we encourage our neighbors and community members to rally together to denounce discrimination on our shores and in our world. Hate does not have a home in Rockaway."
After RYTF tagged the NYPD 100th Precinct's twitter handle in a social media post demanding action, the NYPD responded that they are launching an investigation into the matter.
Milan Taylor, Executive Director of RYTF, said, "Given the national political landscape and the reemergence of white nationalism, it's not surprising that something like this happened, but it doesn't make it less angering. We're holding this press conference to send a message to whoever vandalized the station. We are not afraid and we will not be silent. Rockaway is home to a diverse population and each resident deserves to feel safe in their own backyard."
The public is invited to join the Rockaway Youth Task Force at the press conference on Thursday, October 19th at 6pm at the Beach 67th Street train station.