Racial Equity & Equal Justice for All

Racial Equity & Equal Justice for All
Americans were horrified in the summer of 2020 at the horrific killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and others during encounters with police. These tragedies highlighted the deep-seated injustices that have long affected Black Americans and denied equal justice for all.

Americans were horrified in the summer of 2020 at the horrific killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and others during encounters with police. These tragedies highlighted the deep-seated injustices that have long affected Black Americans and denied equal justice for all. Not only is our criminal justice system broken, but racial disparities continue to exist in many aspects of American life and our economy, including income, wealth, housing, health care, and access to higher education. For too long this country has ignored the need to engage in real, serious policymaking focused on eliminating these disparities and ensuring that every American has an equal shot at ‘life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.’

That’s why House Democrats passed the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act in 2020 to root out bias in police departments and ban practices such as chokeholds and no-knock warrants. It’s why Democrats are continuing to make equity and reducing disparities a focus of our economic agenda and our approach to addressing the COVID-19 crisis, which has highlighted the many racial disparities in health care in our country. In the 117th Congress, this will continue to be a priority for Democrats as we work with the Biden Administration to ensure that our efforts to build back better do not leave any Americans behind and to make equal justice a reality for all Americans.

Racial Equity & Equal Justice for All Related
Today, House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) unveiled a new website, JusticeInPolicing.us, to help educate and engage the public on House Democrats’ legislation to end misconduct and racial bias in law enforcement. 
Two and a half years after President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, and delivered news to the last group of enslaved African Americans that they were free. Since that day, Juneteenth has been a celebration of liberty for those who endured bondage and their descendants.
The Justice in Policing Act is a direct response to the outpouring of calls across the nation to confront systemic racism and end police brutality.
Five years ago, nine African-American parishioners were murdered during a bible study at Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina. Today, we remember the victims and mourn with their families and community. That attack was a deadly incident of racist violence that shocked the conscience of our nation and served as a reminder that the legacy of slavery and segregation continues to haunt us in the twenty-first century. 
The Speaker and I have agreed on that for a long period of time: that the District of Columbia citizens were not being treated fairly.
These are serious times. I have walked across the Edmund Pettus Bridge 15 times, hand and hand with my brother [Congressman] John Lewis. My grandchildren have been there; my daughters have been there. In Selma in 2015, President Obama asked us this: ‘what greater form of patriotism is there than the belief that America is not yet finished, that we are strong enough to be self-critical, that each successive generation can look upon our imperfections and decide that it is in our power to remake this nation to more closely align with our highest ideals?’
Thirty-one years ago, the Chinese government in Beijing brutally and violently disbursed peaceful protestors in Tiananmen Square.
Black lives matter, and the killing of African American men and women must stop. This begins with accountability. Today’s announcement by Attorney General Ellison is a step toward justice for George Floyd, his family, and Americans throughout the country who are grieving the loss of African-American men and women to racism and violence.
Americans across the country are grieving the loss of life of George Floyd and so many African-American men and women who have been victims of deadly racism and violence that continue to plague our country.
As we observe LGBTQ Pride Month this year, we do so at a time of great challenge for our country. Fifty years ago, LGBTQ Americans stood up at Stonewall and spoke out against prejudice, discrimination, and injustice.  Today, we not only pay tribute to the victories and struggles of the LGBTQ rights movement and the courage of its heroes, we also recommit ourselves to the unfinished work in the fight for equality and civil rights.
I was horrified and outraged to learn of yet another incident where an unarmed African-American man was killed by police while begging for his life.  
Today’s rule change is outrageous, discriminating against LGBTQ Americans and their families consistent with this Administration’s ongoing efforts to undermine equality.
WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement on the 105th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide:

I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Rev. Joseph Lowery. 
Good afternoon. Thank you very much for being here. I am pleased to be joined by Karen Bass, the Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus; Jim McGovern, the Chairman of the Rules Committee; and three of my Maryland colleagues, Mr. [Dutch] Ruppersberger, Mr. [John] Sarbanes, and Mr. [Jamie] Raskin. Mr. [Anthony] Brown and Mr. [David] Trone are also joining [in co-sponsoring the legislation], but could not be here at this particular time.
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD-05) introduced legislation to remove a bust of Chief Justice Roger Brooke Taney from public display in the U.S. Capitol and replace it with a bust of Associate Justice Thurgood Marshall. 
This week, the House passed the Emmett Till Antilynching Act, which will explicitly designate lynching as a federal hate crime for the first time in history.
I am pleased this will be a bipartisan vote. This is about Emmett Till. It's about lynching. It's about violence. It's about hate. But in a larger sense, this is about who we are as a country, who we are as a country that said ‘we hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal.’ …To the surprise, I think, of probably many Americans, Madam Speaker, lynching has not been described as a hate crime. We will do that today… The House will make that determination today. I’m proud to bring this legislation to the Floor as Majority Leader."
Thank you very much. [Rep.] Bobby Rush and I are close and dear friends and have been for many years. [Chairwoman] Karen [Bass], I was at an event some two years ago, and… Joe Madison,
Next Wednesday, the House will take up H.R. 35, the Emmett Till Antilynching Act, long overdue legislation to explicitly designate lynching as a hate crime under federal law. Also next week, the House will take up legislation to address the youth vaping and e-cigarette epidemic by prohibiting the manufacturing and sale of all flavored tobacco and increasing the user fee on nicotine to discourage young people from buying these dangerous products, among other provisions...
Madam Speaker, first, let me thank Representative [Jackie] Speier, Representative [Carolyn] Maloney, and all those who have been such warriors on this issue for such a long period of time. They are keeping the faith.
It’s never too late to do the right thing. About sixty days after…Congress passed the ERA, Maryland voted to ratify the ERA. I had been in the State Senate for five years at that point in the time, and I could not understand why women were not equal under our Constitution as it read, and how sad it was that, the consciousness of our Founders, which was extraordinarily high for their time – extraordinary – but they didn’t say ‘we hold these truths to be self-evident that all human kind are created equal.’ It is time to act. It is far past time to act. As I said in Maryland, 48 years ago, [we] overwhelmingly said: all of us are equal.
From the wage gap and pregnancy discrimination to sexual harassment and attacks on reproductive health care, women face gender discrimination in many ways. Persistent gender inequality and discrimination impacts women, their families, and our economy:
WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) delivered remarks today at a press event on H.R. 1980, the Smithsonian Women’s History Act, which will be considered by the House tomorrow. Below is a transcript of his remarks: