Open letter to the UN: Police brutality in the Black community requires action

Michael Brown's father.
August 21, 2014

Independent media organisation Your World News published the following open letter to the United Nations on August 21.


August 21, 2014

Dr. Ivan Šimonović

760 United Nations Plaza,

New York, New York 10017,
Ebola victims women
United States

Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights, United Nations

Dear Dr. Šimonović,

With this Open Letter, the Your World News media collective is expressing its deep concern regarding the continued human rights crisis African/black people, within the United States, are faced with regarding police brutality.

Much of the world is now aware of the recent police killing of an 18-year-old African/black man, Michael Brown, of Ferguson, Missouri. This tragic and barbaric slaying of a young unarmed man came shortly after New York City police brutally strangled to death an unarmed African/black man (Eric Garner). This incident was captured on camera.

These murders of African/black men are far from rare in the United States. Thanks to the 2013 report, “Operation Ghetto Storm” we know that in 2012 police, security guards and vigilantes extra-judicially murdered an African/black person every 28 hours.

This ongoing human rights crisis more than constitutes a dire human rights crisis. We beg to ask the question, “What kind of resolution would the UN issue if this country was not the United States?”

If this was a country without the political and economic strength of the United States, we believe the call to stop this humanitarian crisis would be immediate. We hope the United Nations views the lives of African/black people within the United States as valuable as the lives of other people who the UN has issued resolutions on their behalf before.

The police brutality levied upon African/black people is systematic and is taking lives at an almost once a day rate. We have even seen young children being murdered, like Aiyana Stanley-Jones, who was murdered by a Detroit police officer in 2010. Her murderer, Joseph Weekly, is still a free man.

African/black people within the United States seldom, if ever, receive any justice in regard to police brutality and all of the insidious trappings associated with institutional racism.

Dr. Simonovic, we hope that you and your colleagues at the United Nations will seriously and meticulously look into this grave matter. We hope, in the name of all people concerned with human rights, that we (and the African/black people of the United States) will hear from you regarding this matter at the earliest possible opportunity.

We, and those who share our concern, would be encouraged by a swift reply to this open letter. The world is watching the ongoing human rights plight of African/black people in the US — what will the United Nations do to end this situation of police brutality and, ultimately, save lives?

CC: Ban Ki-Moon, United Nations Secretary General

Anthony Lake, Executive Director UNICEF

Kevin Kennedy, Acting Head, UN Department of Safety and Security


Your World News Editorial Staff