Editor's Note: For a report detailing the ways in which stop and frisk has discriminated against people of color, see Justine Gonzalez's article here.
On Father's Day Sunday in New York City, thousands of New Yorkers marched down Fifth Avenue in a silent protest against the New York Police Department's (NYPD) Stop and Frisk Policy.
Stop and frisk is a policy in which police officers can stop and search individuals they consider to be suspicious. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg insists the law protects public safety, but others claim it predominantly targets young Latino and Black men and is therefore discriminatory.
Mahlet Seyoum attended the protest with her father and reported live for PolicyMic. She writes about the cost of the law for minorities:
Amidst all the protesters, it was easy to ask, “Who actually supports this legislation?” But of course, some do support this heavily protested and contested policy. The question remains: At what cost?
At the cost of a community living day-to-day with no voice to speak out against a policy that disproportionately affects them? At the cost of a generation of youth being marked and treated as criminals outside their own home, and the subsequent psychological effects of that unfounded criminalization? At the cost of ignoring or inadequately contesting a large amount of evidence (both statistical and anecdotal) that stop and frisk does little to keep guns off the street, and to make people feel safe? The 10,000 or so New York City residents who came out with banners and signs, strollers and canes on Sunday afternoon came with a strong agenda to uphold, and a very important statement to make.
Photographer Antonia Colodro also attended the protests, and these are her photos:
1) Sasha Alexander Goldberg: NYPD Keep Your Hands Off Me.
2) Al Sharpton, Pictured Center.
3) Beginning of the March at 110th Street, Young Men and Women Leading the Way.
4) Ramarley Graham's Parents (Father Pictured Left, Mother Right).
5) Protesters Break Their Silence.
6) Muslim Community Showing Support With NYPD Officers
7) Family on the March.
8) Prince Cy'rig, 6 Years Old.