After rioters and looters burned and destroyed Fordham Road and Burnside Avenue Monday night, elected officials gathered Tuesday afternoon to call for an end to the madness.
On June 2, Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. was joined by District Attorney Darcel Clark, Speaker Carl Heastie, elected officials, community groups and clergy to call for peaceful protests following a night of vandalism.
Businesses in the Fordham Road Shopping District and the nearby Burnside Avenue retail corridor were targeted in the overnight, the seventh straight night that protesters faced off with the police nationwide since George Floyd was murdered by Minneapolis police on May 25.
“Last night was bad, not just for the Bronx, but for all of New York City,” Diaz said. “Last night was a tough night for law enforcement, small businesses, for this community but most of all, last night was a devastating blow to our pursuit of justice.”
The press conference took place on Grand Concourse and Fordham Road.
Earlier in the day, Diaz joined several elected officials and community leaders to help clean up debris at Bronx Optical Center, an eye-care business on Burnside Avenue, which had been looted during the overnight unrest.
Diaz returned to Burnside Avenue after the press conference to tour the area with Mayor Bill de Blasio and other elected officials.
“I know that people are angry and scared, but this cannot be the way forward,” Diaz said. “What happened on Fordham Road and Burnside wasn’t justice and George Floyd would not have wanted this done in his name. We call for peaceful protest, for everyone to come together against systemic racism and inequality without hurting those who are right here living in our own communities.”