UPDATED 6/1/20 12:14 p.m. ET: The Minnesota Freedom Fund has raised about $20 million in funds to help release people jailed before trials, according to the New York Times.
"Everyone around the world is ready for justice," Tonja Honsey, MFF's executive director, told the Times. "They’re ready for real change, and they’re supporting that."
Read the original story below.
As protests over the death of George Floyd continue, a growing number of prominent figures are showing their support for the Minnesota Freedom Fund—a nonprofit organization that helps raise bail for demonstrators who've been arrested.
Seth Rogen, Steve Carell, Kehlani, Mark Ruffalo, Noname, and Don Cheadle are among the celebrities who've promoted the fund on social media, posting screenshots of their monetary donations along with the caption, "Matched." They've also encouraged others to donate to the organization, which recently teamed with the National Lawyers Guild and Legal Rights Center to assist protesters in the field.
The MFF was launched in 2016 with the goal of ending cash bail in the state and entire country. As part of their mission, the organization has covered small cash bail and immigration bonds for those who cannot afford it: "Every dollar of financial donations to Minnesota Freedom Fund helps us help free people," the MFF website reads.
Wow. So much support from all over the country + the world! We are overwhelmed with gratitude for everyone who has provided support at this time. Please also consider donating to Reclaim the Block (https://t.co/RfymLGhVc2) + Black Visions Collective (https://t.co/7L4oV1LKtz)— Minnesota Freedom Fund (@MNFreedomFund) May 28, 2020
Tonja Honsey, the executive director of the MFF, told Rolling Stone the organization has received "overwhelming" support over the last several days, and has received tens of thousands of donations to help protesters who've been arrested.
"Black brown and indigenous communities have been terrorized by the system and brutalized and murdered, and there has been no justice. Now we can see there is support coming from everywhere," she said, before touching on the demonstrations. "There are some people who won’t agree with [the rioting] and thats fine, but this isn’t the first time this has happened in this community. There’s been a long line of state-sanctioned terrorism on communities and people have been waiting for justice for a long time and haven’t seen it."
Colin Kaepernick has also used his platform to promote services for Minneapolis demonstrators. The NFL free agent's Know Your Rights Camp is now working with top Minnesota attorneys to provide legal resources for "Freedom Fighters in Minneapolis."
Protests have broken out in major cities across the U.S. in the days since Floyd was killed while in police custody. Now viral-video showed the 46-year-old black man pleading for his life while a white officer kneeled on his neck for about 8 minutes. Floyd was heard telling the officer he couldn't breathe moments before he appeared to lose consciousness. He was pronounced dead at the hospital shortly after.
Derek Chauvin, the fired officer who was filmed pinning Floyd, was arrested Friday and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter; however, the other three officers who were involved in the killing have yet to be charged or taken into custody.
Protests are expected to continue in the upcoming days.
Berlin graffiti collective 1UP crew has also joined the calls for justice, spray painting phrases like "In Memory of George Floyd" and "Please, I Can't Breathe" on various trains.
"Racially motivated police brutality is an ongoing issue in the US and a lot of other countries. It has to stop now, once and for all!" the collective wrote on Instagram. "Justice for George Floyd, Justice for all victims of the abuse from authority. Support you local anti brutality movement."