WESTMONT, Ill. — Illinois Federation of Teachers (IFT) President Dan Montgomery issued the statement below after the brutal murder of Tyre Nichols.
"Our hearts are heavy as we mourn another awful murder at the hands of police. Tyre Nichols was a father, son, an artist, and a beloved community member who should still be alive today. He deserved humanity and empathy, not brutality.
“His life mattered.
“Here we are. Again. Reeling in the aftermath of yet another brutal killing of an unarmed, Black human being by police. We are devastated, but there is no sense of shock or surprise, because we have seen this repeatedly. And we are tired of mourning senseless deaths, tired of comforting mothers who see and hear their own children in the latest victim of violence, and tired of politicians who will decry this act of inhumanity while they block attempts for real change.
“Decades of research make clear what is needed for communities to thrive: quality education, housing, healthcare, and employment that pays a living wage—not militarized police units that terrorize our most vulnerable. This is why we as the IFT use our platform and collective power to advocate for these necessities for ALL our communities. Because Tyre Nichols is one of OUR sons, OUR students, and it is OUR responsibility to do more than pray and hope.
“We send love and comfort to the Nichols family—along with the solemn promise that we will do all we can to ensure that no other family experiences the grief that they and so many others have to endure.
“Please take this time to love, reflect, and re-commit to peace and justice.”