Last week we were all witness to the horrific death of George Floyd. A senseless, brutal act against humanity. Once seen, it cannot be unseen. Like so many in our country and from around the globe, I am sickened. When will enough be enough? I support all who are engaging in peaceful, lawful protests in response to this crime as well as the countless incidents of injustice before it. I have stood with you in body and spirit and will continue to do so.

Now is the time for honesty. We can only address that which we acknowledge. Acknowledging that a problem exist is half the battle. We are no different than the rest of the nation. The roots of racism run deep in the Commonwealth of Virginia. We must finally hold ourselves accountable. Not only through our actions but our inactions. Silence is assent.

There have been outcries of racism for centuries. It is absolutely vital that right now we not only acknowledge those cries, we truly listen to them and take action. This moment, that we face right now, must be our own catalyst for change. This time we aren’t facing a virus for the medical community to combat. We are facing a disease of hatred that requires all of us, individually and as a society, to be the cure.

My promise to you is that I will keep listening. To hear the voices, the lived experiences of our community, which have been disregarded for far too long. I pledge to be a champion, but of even greater importance, I vow to lift other champions to ensure a new reality.

This is a journey I am committed to, knowing it will require a lifetime of commitment and action. There can be no healing without complete restructuring. Therefore, I pledge to ensure decisions and actions in Prince William County are always viewed through a lens of equity for all.