Eric Garner‘s mother says George Floyd‘s death is largely responsible for an anti-chokehold bill finally getting passed in NY — making it a bittersweet victory for her after years of fighting for it.
Gwen Carr spoke to us a few days after New York lawmakers passed the Eric Garner Anti-Chokehold Act — which Gov.Andrew Cuomo has already said he’ll sign into law — and said it’s a step in the right direction.
Gwen’s been pushing for this bill since 2014, when Eric was killed — and it will make it illegal for cops to use a chokehold or a similar restraining move, resulting in serious injury or death. Similar language has been in the NYPD rule book since 1993, but now it’s on its way to becoming state law.
Gwen told us she feels George’s death was the last straw that finally got local politicians to commit to passing the legislation — as, she notes, his killing has reverberated even beyond Eric’s story.
It’s heartbreaking, because Gwen says she felt like she was hearing her own son from the grave listening to George plead with officers that he couldn’t breathe. New York’s State Assembly was also moved, because it passed the bill just 2 weeks after George was killed — even though Ms. Carr had been lobbying for it for nearly 6 years.
Tragically sad, of course, it took yet another black life for lawmakers to wake up, but as Gwen says herself … it’s proof we’re finally heading in a positive direction.