This week, the world is mourning the violent and unnecessary deaths of Philando Castile and Alton Sterling at the hands of the police, as well as the deaths of five police officers last night in Dallas, Texas.
Tonight at 10pm ET/PT, VH1, BET, MTV, Logo and Centric will simulcast a live town hall featuring artists, activists and a studio audience. “What Now?” will be moderated by VH1’s Marc Lamont Hill, plus Charlamagne Tha God, Francesca Ramsey and MTV News’ Jamil Smith.
VH1 stars including Hill, as well as celebrities like Beyoncé have been speaking out. These murders have left many other Americans feeling helpless. If you’re feeling unsure about what you can do to help prevent police brutality and affect the conversation about racial inequality in the United States, here are a few ways you can take action:
Hold your elected officials responsible:
Elected officials are in office to represent you. Contact your representatives to make sure that they are doing everything they can to keep all constituents safe. Follow up with them. Make sure they are hearing your voice loud and clear.
Campaign Zero launched their Legislation Visualization & Take Action Tool yesterday which allows you to see what your local laws are and what your representatives are doing, or not doing, to protect you.
Attend a protest or vigil:
No matter who you are or where you are, your voice and your support are important. A simple search on Google or Facebook will show you the protests and vigils in your area or you can reach out to a local Black Lives Matter chapter.
Register to vote:
The 2016 election is around the corner – make sure your voice is heard loud and clear. Register to vote here (it only takes 2 minutes).
Donate to the families of the victims:
Make a financial contribution to support the families of the victims. Donate to The Alton Sterling Family Scholarship here. Donate to the Philando Castro Family Fund here. While it might still be too early to find fundraisers for the victims in Dallas, you can keep an eye out for them on sites like GoFundMe.
Color of Change launched a petition asking the Department of Justice to bring charges around Philando and Alton’s deaths, as well as open an investigation into Philando’s death, in addition to the one they have already started for Anton.
Share Your Voice:
Head over to BET.com/DontKill to share your reaction to the continued tragic deaths of black Americans at the hands of law enforcement and gun violence. Let your voice be heard and amplified.