Many people are taking part in protests across the US and around the world responding to George Floyd's death in police custody and to larger issues of racial injustice. Others have signed petitions or donated money to civil rights organizations. If the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has kept you home and left you wondering what else you can do to help, the answer is: a lot.
Here are some practical actions you can take to support the Black Lives Matter movement and the protesters raising their voices in an international chorus against racism.
Some protests have led to violence, so protesters need emergency contacts to reach out to if necessary. You can be one of those people. Be sure you have the protester's full name and birthdate handy and keep a list of resources relevant to your area, including bail funds and organizations volunteering legal resources. Set a check-in time for updates.
If your home is located near a protest site, you can offer respite to protesters. Stock up on water, snacks and basic first-aid supplies and create a shady spot outdoors. This can be done while remaining mindful of the social distancing guidelines in place due to the coronavirus pandemic. You can also put together care packages protesters can take with them. It's hot in many places right now and protests can go on for hours.
Global scenes of Black Lives Matter protests show outrage far beyond US
Some people are taking the concept of helping protesters even further. Washington DC resident Rahul Dubey made news earlier this week when he opened his home overnight to dozens of protesters and sheltered them from the police after curfew.
During a time of pandemic and concerns about the spread of coronavirus, Dubey's actions are, of course, not for everyone. "I am absolutely grateful that these heroes and these souls that were able to find shelter inside are home safe," Dubey told WJLA news the next morning.
Make face masks
COVID-19 continues to rage across the US. It can be hard to maintain safe distances when in a crowd of protesters, which means face masks are even more critical than ever. If you have sewing skills, you can create masks for people who need them.
Legal observers are not participants in protests. They are there to help keep law enforcement and other officials accountable for their actions. These observers can often be identified by their lime-green hats. Check with your local NLG chapter for training details. Some chapters are offering Zoom training sessions.
Watch this video
YouTube user Zoe Amira compiled an hour-long video of music, poetry and art from black creators and is donating the ad revenue to BLM-related organizations which was taken down due to revenue restrictions.