A local Black Lives Matter group is holding a rally Friday at Miller Park to address recent violence in Bloomington-Normal.
Black Lives Matter Bloomington-Normal (BNI) co-founder Kimberly Veal said the group has goals of directing local, state and federal funds away from “militarizing the police force” to instead develop community programs.
“Taking that money and building restorative justice programs to help people lift themselves out of this situation to be provided with opportunities,” Veal said.
She said the rally will address violence within the community as well as the factors that create those situations of violence.
“The overall goal of the rally is to show the community that we’re here,” Veal said. “We’re here to engage with them. We’re here to be of service to them. We’re here to support them in their goals. And we’re here to help them. We’re here to build and grow.”
She hopes Friday’s rally will bring awareness to the group, which is soon to be acknowledged as a member of the nationwide Black Lives Matter organization.
There is a second Black Lives Matter group in town that Vale said is not part of BNI, but that having two groups is good becase it allows for a greater outreach to the community. She said there are currently no plans to merge the two groups.
The rally will run from 5 to 7 p.m. at Miller Park in Bloomington.
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