Following the protests in Riverhead, Port Jefferson and Shirley, the Hamptons will hold its first demonstration tonight, June 2, at 5 p.m. The Justice for George Floyd Protest and March, organized by Lisa Votino, will begin at the Bridgehampton Community House and proceed to the Bridgehampton Monument. In a grand display of solidarity, the protesters will lie down in the middle of the road with their hands behind their backs, chanting, “I can’t breathe,” for eight minutes and 46 seconds, the amount of time Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin held his knee on Floyd’s neck, ignoring his cries for help.
“We are moved to action after the vicious and callous murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police. We stand in solidarity with our brothers and sisters all over the country who demand an end to racist policing,” Votino said in an emailed call to action, adding that protesters will be demanding that the appropriate agencies arrest the three officers who chose to stand and watch as Floyd was forcefully pinned to the ground, causing him to lose consciousness and later die from his injuries, according to two autopsies released on Monday.
While Floyd’s murder is the focus of the Bridgehampton march, protesters are also expected to wave signs showing support for the Black Lives Matter movement and calling justice for Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and other recent victims.
Votino has asked that protesters wear facial coverings, as is currently advised in Southampton Town when within six feet of others, and park between the community house and the monument with signs facing the road. She has also said that all are welcome to join the demonstration, including children, as the protest is expected to remain peaceful. At the time of writing, 228 people have gone to the Justice for George Floyd Protest Facebook page to announce their planned attendance, with 333 more interested in attending.