Tamir Rice's Mother And ACLU Partner Release Police Safety Handbook For Kids
The guide was purposefully designed with bright colors and language that is easy for children to understand.
Ahead of the five year anniversary of the passing of Tamir Rice, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Ohio and his mom released a safety handbook in his name.
Samaria Rice, the 12-year-old's mom, said they created the Tamir Rice Safety Handbook "to help youth navigate interactions with law enforcement."
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"In any situation you can only control one thing—your own actions. Even when you do everything right, things can still go wrong," the handbook reads on the front page.
"Know that police can lie and ask trick questions. If they tell you they already talked to your friend, or that you won't be arrested if you talk, they may be lying," the handbook continues.
The handbook includes four tips: what to do if you're stopped by the police, if law enforcement asks you questions, if officials want to search you and if you're arrested.
The eight-page handbook directs children to "stay calm," "ask if you're free to leave," and what having "the right to remain silent" means.
Detailed in the guide are additional tips for students while at school and away from their parents.
ACLU Campaign Manager Melekte Melaka said the guide was purposefully designed with bright colors and language that is easy for children to understand, according to Fox8.
"We hope that it's a guide that's accessible to young people, that gives them constructive tools, that keeps Tamir's memory alive, and that showcases the amazing work of Samaria, all those things," said Melaka.
At an event at the Cleveland Museum of Art Wednesday night, Samaria also announced a fundraiser for The Rice Foundation which will go toward the Tamir Rice Afrocentric Cultural Center. The building, which needs $20,000 in upgrades, will "provide artistic, educational and civic youth programs that celebrate the history and culture of people of African descent."
This week marks 5 yrs since 12 y/o Tamir Rice was killed by police while on a playground in Cleveland. The facts are tragic, however, Ms. Rice has refused to have that be the end of his story. She’s building a youth art center & will unveil the plan 11/20 in #TamirRice’s honor. pic.twitter.com/eLaeXLVzah— OPAL TOMETI (@opalayo) November 18, 2019
“The arts helped Tamir with self-expression and he would want to live in a world that is equitable for all people,” Samaria said. “Our hope is to keep Tamir’s memory alive through the creation of the Tamir Rice Legacy Fund. I am humbled by the outpouring of love and support for Tamir and grateful to everyone who has already contributed.”
The building will also have a dance studio, music room and classroom for tutoring.
Tamir was shot and killed on November 22, 2014, by a Cleveland officer while he was at a recreation center playing with a toy gun. Timothy Loehmann, the officer who fired the deadly shots, was cleared of criminal charges. Loehmann was later fired for failing to state on his job application that he had previously been laid off from another police department, as Blavity previously reported.
Since his passing, the community continues to honor Tamir's life.
"We have the power to transform a grave injustice into something that will stand for a world where all of our lives will finally matter," said Black Lives Matter co-founder Opal Tometi.