Ferguson activists demanded $20 million from Black Lives Matter and said the organization did not provide enough aid to local activist groups in Ferguson, Missouri and other places around the country where racial justice protests occurred.
“Today, we hold Black Lives Matter accountable,” said Tory Russell in a video posted to twitter. Russell is a self-described “frontline organizer” and “freedom fighter” from Ferguson, the place where protests erupted following the 2014 death of Michael Brown by the hands of police.
“What kind of movement are we building when we say ‘black lives matter’ but the freedom fighters and the families are being left behind,” Russell said in a video in which he appeared alongside Michael Brown’s father.
“Where is our restitution?” the activist continued. “We’re not begging for a handout, we’re coming for what we deserve.”
Today our co-founder, #Ferguson frontline organizer @VanguardTNT alongside #MikeBrown‘s father demands 20 million from #BlackLivesMatter in order to continue the work they and other have been doing since the uprising since 2014. pic.twitter.com/4rDA28ZKnB
— TheIBFA (@THEIBFA) March 2, 2021
Black Lives Matter had come under more public scrutiny within the last year. In December, the organization received a letter with demands for transparency on how funds are distributed from 10 of their local chapters. Following this, for the first time in eight years, BLM released detailed information about their finances. (RELATED: National Arm Of Black Lives Matter Spent Millions On Travel And Consultants, Financial Statements Show)
Russell said that the $20 million he demanded for Ferguson activists would be used for Black Panther-style programs, annual commemorations for Michael Brown’s life, and organizing anti-racist fellowships and stipends.