DES MOINES, Iowa — Wednesday marked the sixth night of protests in the metro surrounding the death of George Floyd.
Nearly 1,000 protesters gathered at the Ingersoll Avenue Price Chopper Wednesday night and marched to Mayor Frank Cownie’s home on the west side of Des Moines.
This was another peaceful night of protesting, and organizers came with a list of demands.
These demands included, passing a racial profiling ordinance, releasing those who were arrested while peacefully protesting, eliminating the county wide curfew and restoring the voting rights of those who have served time in the state.
“We also want to end the curfew. Because we are peacefully protesting. Every time we have peacefully protested we’ve been antagonized and harassed by the police department, which is not fair. We are coming in peace, we’ve never been violent, any of that. So we need the propaganda to stop, we need the fakeness to stop, we need everything to stop, we need the curfew to stop,” said one protestor.
Cownie said he would include the eliminating of racial profiling ordinance in next Monday’s Des Moines city council meeting and he would work with Polk County jail on protesters who’ve been arrested. Cownie will meet with Polk County Thursday regarding the curfew being lifted.
”I’ve gotta tell you, I’ve been moved for the last … since last Friday from day one. I mean … I’ve been hearing their pain, I’ve been hearing their passion, their compassion, so appropriately stated and laid out. I was standing the first night on Friday with Representative Abdul-Samad and he and I looked at each other along with Isaiah Knox who is standing next to me right now and we said, ‘hey we’re moving in the right direction’ and then of course the unfortunate thing was it got captured by some other people who turned it into a riot. You know … I have been moved by it. I was in Union Park, I’ve been downtown most every night when things have happened. And I like the progression of what I’m seeing here tonight. This is peaceful, this is people still talking about their concerns. They have some valid points that they stated tonight that I’m working on and we’re going to move as many of them forward immediately as possible,” Mayor Cownie said.
The mayor has agreed to reach out to the governor about the voting rights of citizens who have been incarcerated.
Cownie said he believes the protest held in front of his home Wednesday was successful and he’ll continue to work with organizers.
“They spoke up and we were able to have a reasonable exchange and I really appreciate that and we’re going to keep it going,” Cownie said.