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Resolutions & Amendments

Other International Executive Board Resolutions

Justice for Trayvon Martin

Resolution No.


George Zimmerman was found not guilty of second degree murder for shooting and killing 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, who was unarmed, in February 2012. In a great injustice, Zimmerman was able to walk away without penalty for a crime he committed; and


This trial reveals a larger dysfunction in our criminal justice system. Martin’s death is not the first time in which a person shot an unarmed victim and later claimed immunity under a so-called Stand Your Ground law, which is really a Shoot First law. This law was designed by the American Legislative Exchange Council, which continually launches attacks against labor as well. And this body previously resolved, “Whatever the results of the investigations, we believe that the Florida Shoot First, and similar state laws, should be repealed”; and


This injustice also reveals the deep-seated, systemic racism that persists in our country. The verdict clearly says that lives of young Black men are less valuable than the lives of others. It places these men and boys in danger wherever they go, and it rolls back years of tireless advocacy for civil rights for all.


We will call for the Justice Department to immediately conduct an investigation into the civil rights violations committed against Trayvon Martin. We know that it will take federal intervention and a massive grassroots movement, but justice and positive change are still possible; and


As we have throughout our history, AFSCME will work with faith leaders, community groups and civil and human rights activists in coalition to raise public awareness of injustices that threaten to tear apart the social fabric that unifies our nation.