Tuesday the NFL and Inspire Change unveiled a new PSA dedicated to Stephon Clark, the unarmed 22 year-old father of two who was fatally shot and killed in his grandmother’s backyard in Sacramento, California by two officers from the Sacramento Police Department. Clark’s PSA is the fifth spearheaded by Roc Nation and the NFL in efforts to raise awareness about the need to create positive change in our communities and end systemic racism. For the league, the PSA falls under its Inspire Change initiative, a platform focused on the collaboration of the NFL and players to reduce barriers to opportunity and combat social injustice.
Watch the touching clip below:
The PSA is narrated by Stephon’s mother, Se’Quette Clark, who also appears in the message. Here’s the brief statement she released in response to the launch of the piece:
“With sincerity and gratitude, I would like to thank Roc Nation and the NFL for choosing to honor the life of my son, Stephon Clark, who was unjustly stolen from us on March 18, 2018 by Sac PD officers Terrence Mercadal and Jared Robinet who are still employed and patrolling our streets. As a mother, I can’t help the immense feeling of pride; knowing my son’s life will affect so many people for generations to come. Since my son was murdered, my family has been extremely dedicated to social justice reform through our footwork in this new Civil Rights Movement; my son, Stevante Clark emerging as a Civil Rights Leader in the movement; my mother, Sequita Thompson, and my membership in the Mothers of the Movement; our foundation IAMSAC (Stephon Alonzo Clark) and Stephon Clark Legacy; our weekly actionable, solutions platform titled Stephon Clark Sunday; and last but not least, the passing of The Stephon Clark Law (AB392) in California which holds police accountable for killing people when they did not pose a deadly threat and charging the officers in criminal court.”
We continue to mourn the death of Stephon along with the Clark family but we are so glad to see his story being amplified in this way and to know that the work his family is doing is creating change and making a better world for his and other black children so they will not suffer the same injustices.
Last November the Players Coalition released their first PSA of the program around Danroy “DJ” Henry, the former Pace University football player who was fatally shot by a police officer on Oct. 17, 2010 in Mount Pleasant, N.Y. Meek Mill and the Dreamchasers unveiled the second PSA of the program in December around Antwon Rose II, an unarmed 17-year-old and honor roll student who was fatally shot by an East Pittsburgh police officer on June 19, 2018. Roc Nation released another in March around Hadiya Pendleton, an unarmed 15-year-old girl who was fatally shot in the back and killed while standing with friends at a park in Chicago, Illinois on January 29, 2013. Most recently, the NFL unveiled a PSA around Botham Jean, an unarmed 26 year-old man who was fatally shot by an off-duty Dallas Police Department patrol officer on Sept. 6, 2018, as part of the #EveryonesChild campaign.
“We want to continue to raise awareness for victims of systemic racism to ensure their stories are not forgotten,” Anna Isaacson, Senior Vice President of Social Repsonsibility at the NFL said via statement. “As part of Inspire Change, we will use our platform to recognize these individuals throughout history and support organizations that foster positive relationships between law enforcement and their communities.”
This is certainly a step in the right direction for the NFL but more definitely needs to be done. 5 PSAS reflect just a tiny fraction of the lives shattered by unjust police. What are some other steps the league can take to help create change?