Zeff Law Firm Statement on the death of George Floyd

By: Gregg Zeff
On: June 4, 2020

Black Live Matter

Zeff Law Firm Monitors Police Activity

The video of the tragic death of George Floyd has now circled the globe and many cities across the United States are in flames. Zeff Law Firm mourns the loss of George Floyd and grieves for the lack of humanity shown to him by the police.
The video depicts a scene all too familiar to African Americans in this country. The horrifying images and sounds of suffering at the hands of indifferent police are haunting mainstream Americans today. These images and sounds are not new or unique. Our video devices are now capturing for Americans of all races and ethnicities what many have witnessed for generations—police are more violent towards people of color. Police often treat African Americans with little to no human dignity. Zeff Law Firm, in connection with the New Jersey chapter of the NAACP, has been vigilant in monitoring police activity in New Jersey for years now. And, we believe that our initiatives have begun to see results. New Jersey is paying attention.

Police Statistics in New Jersey

Unfortunately, statistics show that police in New Jersey are still more likely to use force against African Americans and other minorities versus whites. African Americans in New Jersey are punished differently than whites for the same offenses. We are more likely to be arrested, fined, and incarcerated at higher rates for crimes for which whites receive little to no punishment. So, the problems are very real here. But we are making a difference and we urge Minneapolis and other communities to follow our lead.

Zeff Law Firm joined the fight to take investigations of police shooting deaths out of the hands of local authorities by having the legislature pass a law requiring the state Attorney General to perform all investigations into police shooting and custody deaths. This removes the perceived bias of friends and co-workers Investigating a shooting.

Working with Police Chiefs for Change in New Jersey

Several years ago, we worked with other organizations in inviting all the police chiefs in New Jersey to an implicit bias summit to show the department heads how police, even those that do not perceive themselves to be prejudiced against any group, hold implicit biases that mold their interactions with the public. We are pleased that Attorney General Grewal has now required that all New Jersey police officers attend implicit bias training. And, the good news about implicit bias training is that once you are aware of your implicit biases, you can change.

We have participated in Town Hall meetings throughout New Jersey to gather more information on police inequities in our state. The police departments in New Jersey know we are watching them carefully and know that the New Jersey elected officials respect the power of our votes.

Progress has been made, but not nearly enough and certainly not fast enough. We will honor the life of George Floyd by demanding more. Zeff Law Firm is committed to continuing these efforts for civil rights so that the name George Floyd becomes synonymous with positive change.

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