Message from NJSBA President Kimberly A. Yonta

Enter Title

April 21, 2021
Contact: Kate Coscarelli
Yesterday, was an important day in our nation for the rule of law and the advancement of social justice. After a thorough investigation, charges were brought, a jury was empaneled, a fair and just trial took place and Derek Chauvin was convicted for the murder of George Floyd. Our nation witnessed the American system of justice operate as designed and as it should in each and every case.
While this is a moment of accountability and the rule of law prevailed, racism and racial bias continue to undermine public confidence in our justice system. There is more work to do to ensure that laws throughout the country are applied fairly, consistently and impartially. As the leading legal organization in New Jersey, we will continue to lend our voice and our resources to supporting racial and social justice.
The NJSBA Commission on Racial Equity in the Law is actively working on multiple fronts, including gathering data on police practices, reviewing municipal court practices, and examining legislation that would establish civilian review boards to ensure transparency, fairness, and equality in policing. This is work that pursues systemic change with a long-term view, and we will not abandon it because one case has reached its conclusion.
We are hopeful that yesterday’s verdict will result in our civil and criminal justice institutions engaging in intense self-reflection so that all are treated equally under the law. As an organization, we want you to know that we remain steadfast and committed to honoring our mission as an organization to ensure justice for all.