City leaders across the nation are addressing the protests and riots popping up in response to the death of George Floyd.
Santa Barbara City Mayor Cathy Murillo sent a statement Sunday addressing the current national scene expressing her condolences to the Floyd family and all Black Americans.
Mayor Murillo said local governments stand in solidarity with those community members who choose to peacefully protest.
"I agree strongly with the statement released by the regional NAACP – as a country – we must prevent what happened to George Floyd and countless other Black souls who have lost their lives in situations that are steeped in a system of institutional bias that is pervasive. FBI Director Christopher Wray said it best -- opining -- the events following Floyd’s death clearly illustrate how quickly public trust can be lost," Mayor Murillo said in a statement Sunday.
Mayor Murillo went on to applaud Santa Barbara Police Chief Lori Luhnow for her "courageous leadership to ensure simultaneous dialogue and action to address race in policing." Mayor Murillo addressed the agency's technical training on topics such as principled policing and implicit bias.
She additionally thanked the Santa Barbara Public Library for their contribution to promote relative literary introspection on justice for all. The library has curated a list of more than 100 books on the history of racism, anti-racist work and how to talk to your child about race.
"Last, it is never too late – from young to old – to ask – How do I act on personal bias? How can I question my engrained belief system? Those foundational questions can be properly engaged by way of formal education," said Mayor Murillo.
In the statement, she called on local educators to create and endorse an high school Ethnic Studies curriculum from elementary through high school students.
"These words are not meant to be an end – but the beginning of a well-deserved dialogue to advance social equity in Santa Barbara. We owe it to tomorrow’s future to break the cycle of today’s bias," said Mayor Murillo.