“The killing of George Floyd is another avoidable senseless tragedy, highlighting institutional racism and the need for immediate change. Thank you to the many peaceful protesters who came out seeking justice and systemic change, we see and hear you.”
-Marya Johnston-McIntosh, LCC Board President
BACKGROUND: Looting and fires have left portions of South Minneapolis unrecognizable. The Third Precinct Police Station is located in Greater Longfellow at E Lake St. and Minnehaha Ave, which was the epicenter for nightly riots. From our initial assessment, at least 15 buildings have been completely destroyed, including 3 major grocery stores, and at least 51 other businesses have been significantly damaged. Numerous other buildings have been vandalized. These businesses provide critical resources and jobs in our community. Most are locally- and/or minority-owned. The Greater Longfellow community is already cleaning up and coordinating donations. We seek justice, racial equity and to rebuild the resources of our community. But we need help.
PLAN of ACTION: The Longfellow Community Council is the neighborhood organization for the Greater Longfellow community. We’re raising money to implement a three-pronged strategy to aid the rebuilding of our community: (1) Food Security, (2) Safety & Security, and (3) Business Restoration (details below.) COVID-19 has already taken an economic toll throughout the US, including Greater Longfellow. Without financial assistance, many of these small businesses won’t recover. The potential loss of these businesses would negatively impact the whole community and adjacent areas. (Note: Many business insurance policies don’t cover damage caused from rioting).
1) Food Security: Part of the funds raised will help our residents who have been impacted by the indefinite loss of food access because of the 3 destroyed grocery stores . Since public transportation is also disrupted, many are struggling to get to necessary supplies. These funds will also be used to support food banks and other meal assistance programs over the long-term.
2) Safety & Security: Many in our neighborhood initially felt helpless as they watched their community burn . Residents have now come together working tirelessly to clean up , support each other, and help secure our community. These funds will be directed towards safety needs, including outdoor lighting for places left dark by destruction, graffiti removal supplies, reflective vests for neighborhood walks and other community safety requests based on residents’ needs.
3) Business Restoration: With these funds, we will coordinate short and long-term support for rebuilding businesses. First, we’ll develop a Small Business Assessment & Stabilization Plan to survey the damage and provide a roadmap for businesses to rebuild. Secondly, we’ll create a Small Area Development Plan to help residents take an active role in future development as things are rebuilt.
Want to help? Donations can be made at Share Your Love for Greater Longfellow on Go Fund Me, or please consider sharing this information on your social media to help us reach more people.