How families talk with children about racism, bullying, and stress of a COVID-19 world is the center of the Black Lives Matter Children’s March taking place at 4:30 PM today from City Hall to Arlington Park.
The idea came after members of the Allies for Black Justice (ABJ) heard from parents at past rallies. Co-organizer Melissa, who didn’t want her last name used, said children are the future, and how they view these topics starts at home.
“Find ways to be polite, and then if you bump into someone who isn’t a polite champion, there’s ways to handle that,” Melissa said of her message to young people. “And parents, the message to parents is leading by example and providing that environment for your children to be able to standup.”
Melissa as well others like Alicia Yeager and Dianne Britain from ABJ, have been active in ongoing rallies and efforts for racial equality happening in the city. Melissa thought having a rally with children and families in mind was important for everyone.
“We don’t want them necessarily afraid of police, or anybody,” said Melissa. “But just really a reality of where we are on both sides. If you see it [bullying/injustice] happening, versus if you’re the one it’s happening to”
The march will start on the steps of City Hall with various speakers of color, and feature inspiring music courtesy of local R&B singer Phobie of Lion Entertainment. The ABJ will also be handing out donated backpacks to children as they prepare for the upcoming school year.
Organizers want participants to practice social distance, asking those attending to either drive their car or bike along the route.