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“Say Her Name” Breonna Taylor’s Family Gets A $12 million settlement

image-by-AmySherald-Vanity-Fair

Image by Amy Sherald-Vanity Fair

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It has been six months, 187 days, since the wrongful death of Breonna Taylor. On September 15th, the city of Louisville, Kentucky came to a $12 million settlement towards Taylor’s family. 

The settlement declares that Black women’s lives matter too says Benjamin Crump, the Taylor family attorney. 

Taylor was an emergency medical technician that was shot to death in her own home by police serving a “no-knock” warrant. During a conference Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer stated that Taylor’s wrongful death “ignited a movement in Louisville and the nation for racial justice.” 

Going forward, the city of Louisville will implement department regulations to prevent incidents, like Breonna Taylor’s, from happening again.  

Some of the changes the city police department wants to improve will be building stronger connections between police and the communities they serve by establishing a housing credit program as an incentive for officers to live in certain low-income census tracts in the city. Officers are encouraged, yet not required, to volunteer two hours bi-weekly in the communities they serve.

A solution would be established to include social workers in the Louisville Metro Police Department “so they can provide assistance on certain police runs where their presence can be helpful.”

More reforms created called for more transparency and accountability for police officers, including amending how search warrants are obtained and used. The police department will now require a commanding officer to review and approve all search warrants. Also the affidavits supporting them before an officer seeks judicial approval.

The city will also institute an “early warning system” to track all use-of-force incidents and citizen complaints. The city plans to create an Office of Inspector General to monitor the early warning system.

Lonita Baker, an attorney for the Taylor family, said a settlement was “non-negotiable without significant police reform…Justice for Breonna is multi-layered. What we were able to accomplish today through the civil settlement against the officers is tremendous, but it’s only a portion of a single layer,” 

Taylor’s mother, Tamika Palmer, expressed that her fight for justice isn’t over although they have a settlement in place. She will continue to not rest until the officers responsible for Taylor’s death are criminally charged. This is only the beginning of getting full justice for Breonna Taylor.