Sen. Warner, Rep. McEachin call on fellow lawmakers in Congress to take action for racial justice

A protester holds up a Black Lives Matter sign in front of the United States Capitol.
A protester holds up a Black Lives Matter sign in front of the United States Capitol.(Source: NBC News)
Updated: Jun. 5, 2020 at 3:56 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WVIR) - Two Democratic members of Virginia’s congressional delegation are discussing ways lawmakers in Washington, D.C. are confronting racial disparities.

Senator Mark Warner and 4th District Representative Donald McEachin fielded questions from voters during a virtual town hall on Friday, June 5.

Protests for racial justice were a focus of several questions.

“We need to have action at the local level, the state level, and the federal level. But beyond that, collectively as a society, we’ve got to keep this at the forefront,” McEachin said.

McEachin says House Democrats will roll out legislation Monday, June 8, aimed at changing policing in America in response to the death of George Floyd while in police custody in Minneapolis.

“I think you can look forward to things such as banning the chokehold. I think you can look forward to things like a national policing standard so that citizens and police officers across the country, rather than locality by locality, understand what’s required of them under certain circumstances,” McEachin said.

McEachin and Warner are also calling on Congress to address disparities in health care that are being highlighted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We need to make sure any future COVID legislation includes a disparity study on all these programs so we can see who has been most hit by COVID-19,” Warner said.

McEachin is pushing for an Environmental Justice For All bill to improve people’s health through a healthier environment.

“It is so critical we make sure folks have clean air, clean water to exist in,” he said.

Both lawmakers are up for re-election this year. They’re urging Virginians to take their anger from the pavement to the polls.

"Your vote still carries as much power as your voice,” Warner said.

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