On the first anniversary of the police killing of Walter Wallace, Jr, the POWER Live Free Campaign will join the “Standing in Solidarity for Racial Justice” Vigil at the Unitarian Society of Germantown to honor the life of Mr. Wallace, and to call for a more caring response to people experiencing mental crisis, with policies and practices that prioritize mental health intervention, rather than police involvement. We will be going LIVE!
Whether you plan on coming in person or viewing LIVE on Facebook, mark GOING- HERE
Location Details: The church is located at 6511 Lincoln Drive, Phila., PA 19119. Our large parking lot is located BEHIND the building at GPS address 359 W. Johnson St, between Greene and Wayne Sts. Look for the sign and drive down the long driveway to the parking lot. Or for accessible parking only, you may park in the courtyard parking area on Lincoln Drive.
Event Details: Walter Wallace, Jr., a 27-year-old Black man who struggled with mental health issues, was shot by police in front of his Southwest Philadelphia home on October 26, 2020, after family members called 911 to seek help because Mr. Wallace was in crisis. There were no mental health personnel with the responding officers, who in less than one minute after arriving on the scene released a hail of 14 bullets, killing Mr. Wallace in front of his mother, other relatives and neighbors.
POWER Live Free is calling for changes in policy and practice that would better serve people in our communities who are disabled and/or suffer from mental health challenges when they are in crisis. These include improved assessment in the screening and assignment of 911 calls, and a model of response by trained mental health professionals and a decrease in the involvement of armed police who have little or no de-escalation training in response to these calls.
The press conference will include faith leaders, grassroots organizers, and members of Philadelphia City Council. Members of the Wallace family have been invited.
“Standing in Solidarity for Racial Justice” began on June 2, 2020, one week after the murder of George Floyd, and continued as a daily one-hour vigil on Lincoln Drive, recently changing to a twice-weekly schedule (Tuesday and Friday).