May 25, 2021 marks the one year anniversary of George Floyd’s death, which was at the hands of recently convicted and now-former police officer Derek Chauvin. This past year has been a whirlwind for America as countless new cases – that demonstrate police misconduct towards people of color – have come to light. 

Many of such cases have gone unnoticed in the past, but for the last 12 months, the Black Lives Matter (#BLM) movement has dominated social media. Common chants and hashtags, such as “say his/her name” and “know their names,” draw attention to the severity of the social justice issue. The addressing of these deadly incidents between police officers and communities of color has become one of President Joe Biden’s top priorities. 

Biden has been pushing Congress to pass the police reform bill, known as the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, by the one year anniversary of Floyd’s death. However, despite Democratic control in the House and razor-thin majority in the Senate, the reform will not be completed in time for the symbolic date as negotiations with Senate Republicans drag out. Section 242, which addresses the “qualified immunity” of American police officers, is being highly contested and has divided Congress. Sen. Cory Booker (D-New Jersey) spoke out about the Congressional divide, “This is one of the big issues that we’re working very hard to see if we could bridge this wide gulf.” 

Biden is working tirelessly to “rebuild trust in communities” and has been in contact with the Floyd family since last May. He met with the family in a private visit before Floyd’s funeral and then had a heartening phone call after the verdict came out in Chauvin’s trial. Although the bill will not be in the Oval Office by May 25, Biden is hosting the Floyd family in the White House on the day marking the one year anniversary of the tragic death felt by millions of Americans.

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