Guilty verdict for Derek Chauvin a step toward a more just future

News Release

For Immediate Release
CFT – A Union of Educators and Classified Professionals

Contact: Matthew Hardy –

CFT President Jeff Freitas, Secretary Treasurer Luukia Smith, and Senior Vice President Lacy Barnes released the following statement after former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was found guilty of murder in the death of George Floyd:

Today a jury in Minnesota found former police officer Derek Chauvin guilty of all charges for the murder of George Floyd in May of last year. While the verdict will not bring George Floyd back, it represents a fundamental step toward police accountability and a more just future.

Last June, following the killing of George Floyd, as millions took to the street in protest, CFT put out a statement calling for racial justice, demanding accountability for the murder of George Floyd and highlighting the urgent need for all of us to work for racial justice every day.  We stated, “We must continue to show up and speak up in solidarity for Black lives and refuse to be distracted from the urgent need for us all to work for racial justice every day. This work of anti-racism is for all of us – as individuals, as a union, in our schools, and across society – and we must remain fully committed to it until our vision of a just society is realized.”

In the wake of the Derek Chavin verdict, we recommit ourselves to this important work.

We will continue to work with our national affiliate, our locals, and our members to be partners in demanding  equity, demanding justice, and demanding an end to systemic and institutionalized racism.

Today, we witnessed the courts, our legal system, holding a guilty police officer accountable for murdering George Floyd, but the fight for true justice continues. This decision will mean little if we do not continue the critical work  of dismantling  systemic and oppressive racism infused in our institutions.   

Our thoughts are first and foremost with the family of George Floyd and his community. While today was an important step forward, the verdict does not erase the immense pain of losing a beloved father, son, brother, and friend.  May they find peace in the days ahead.


CFT – A Union of Educators and Classified Professionals is the California affiliate of the AFT, AFL-CIO, representing faculty and support staff in public and private schools and colleges, from early childhood through higher education.