Aurora attorney Sharonda Roberson is still fighting for justice a year after George Floyd’s death
The racist reckoning of 2020 and the murder of George Floyd caused 26-year-old Aurora attorney Sharonda Roberson to switch her 10-year plan to a two-year plan. The family and criminal defense lawyer started working in a law firm in her own private law firm in January.
“Nobody understands the impact this one murder had on my life,” said Roberson. “It gave me my voice. I never saw myself as someone who would be on the front lines. I knew I was very stubborn and passionate, but I never thought I would protest and create a grassroots organization for systemic racism. I’m so sad this happened to George Floyd because this murder shouldn’t have happened. But it gave people like me a voice for the community and helps us move forward. “
Almost a year ago, Roberson organized her first peace rally, focusing on police reform, with the help of friends and members of a private Facebook group she set up for Aurora residents to share complaints about the city, including transparency about the complaint process against Police officers. Since then, Roberson has helped organize the People’s Coalition, a multicultural group dedicated to fighting economic and racial injustices, better education for the community, and easily accessible resources. Following Roberson’s letters of formal notice to local elected and legal officials, Aurora set up a civil review panel to review matters involving the Aurora Police Department.
“That was a great achievement,” she said. “They are small steps. We have improved. We got the people in the community very engaged, people who were never engaged before. So it’s still a step forward. We achieve what we can. “
The coalition keeps talking about racial injustice as it prepares for summer events, including a poetry slam to raise money for the People’s Coalition Bond Fund, which pays bonds for people living in the four counties of Aurora (DuPage, Kendall , Kane and Will); an empowerment conference to raise funds for domestic violence survivors; and a bloc party that focuses on voter registration, Roberson said.
“We’re not waiting for the next George Floyd; We’re staying very proactive, ”said Roberson. “You can’t just say that I don’t want to do church work until there’s a big media incident. You need to keep the base working all the time. Take care of yourself and your community. So if something happens, you are armed, ready and can address this problem. “