To Our Community
June 8, 2020
There are few words that can relay the emotions of what we are experiencing and grappling with right now. The murder of George Floyd is reprehensible and the rage many are feeling is right and justified. Every peaceful protest is necessary because Black Lives Matter.
Taking to the streets in protest is a fundamental American right. Many of our country’s greatest accomplishments have been advanced through rallies, vigils, and street protests. It happens through art, too, showcased in our backyard: the Whitney’s 2017 exhibit, An Incomplete History of Protest: Selections From The Whitney’s Collection was a powerful show highlighting America’s history of dissent and the online gallery is worth a visit to reflect on how much progress has been made and yet how much remains the same.
Since Sunday, over 20 of the district’s businesses have been looted or vandalized, while on the verge reopening. We cannot let the havoc wreaked by actors unrelated to the powerful protests seen throughout our City undermine the arc of history on its bend towards justice.
Meatpacking prides itself as a diverse community of workers and residents, a neighborhood where travelers walk alongside locals. A place where people mingle and divisions dissolve and everyone eats, shops, and plays on our cobblestone streets.
Right now we’re listening to the booming voices of those in protest, to the quiet hopes of those who have faced a lifetime of systematic racism, to those who want change but don’t know what to do. This isn’t easy to figure out, but we’re committed to making change. Seeing and learning from what many are already doing makes us proud to be part of a neighborhood where businesses make statements and take action.
As an organization, we’re looking to see what actions we can take, starting with what we might be able to do to bring more Black-owned businesses to the Meatpacking District and ensure a diversity of voices in our in-district and digital programming.
To our black and brown neighbors and employees in the district: How can we do better? Whether it’s to share an idea, ask for help, or put things into perspective, we want to hear your voice. Please write us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for being a partner as we work through these uncertain times. Together we can and will build a stronger community.
Meatpacking District Management Association