Black Lives Matter protest held in Lansing

Posted: 7:34 AM, Jul 15, 2016
Updated: 2016-07-15 07:34:15-04

Both protesters and the Bernero administration agree police violence hasn't been an issue in Lansing like it has in other cities. But the Black Lives Matter protesters who showed up at city hall Thursday felt it was important to show their support for victims everywhere.

"I think it's time for change across America," says Deddrick Bodiford. "I think police brutality has got to stop, as well as brutality against police."

But in order to stop the violence, there needs to be dialogue.

"We can't just talk to ourselves," says reverend Melvin Jones, "we need to have that conversation with the mayor, with the police department, so that we can hear each other and out of that can come some sustainable effort towards improving not only the community but improving policing."

Which is why mayor Bernero and Lansing police chief Michael Yankowski were there to get the conversation moving.

"They need to know we care," says mayor Virg Bernero.

And also to learn where improvement is needed.

"Anytime we have the opportunity to sit down with our community and talk about issues, talk about the way the community policing programs are going, it's important," says Lansing police chief Mike Yankowski.

And Bernero believes the direction he and the police department are heading is fair for all of Lansing.

"[We need to] make sure that our policies and practices of our police department are fair to everybody, and will promote and enhance the preservation of life," says the mayor.