These photos we’re all taken at the Black Lives Matter Protest in Leeds on Sunday 14th June 2020.
My home city of Leeds hosted an incredibly moving and peaceful protest surrounding the the Black Lives Matter movement and the Black Voices Matter movement.
As a white person I have come to understand these movements on a much deeper level as more information has become widely available on social media. Admittedly, this is how I’ve learnt about it and I hate that I wasn’t actively researching this before the social media outbreak – but I am learning and I have learnt so much about this incredible movement.
I now understand that as a white person I have to be actively anti-racist and it’s something that I will be for the rest of my life.
We can all do so much to help this cause and I hope that we continue to do so in a peaceful manner until the change this world deserves happens.
The Black Lives Matter movement has been incredibly enlightening for myself. The whole world, including myself, has learnt more on social media over the past few weeks and months than we ever did at school and it has taught me a lot about systemic oppression and racism engrained in society.
I have obviously always been disgusted by racism and have never participated in such a heinous crime but as a white person I have come to realise that it is not enough to be not racist. I have to be actively anti-racist.
The Black Lives Matter Protest in Leeds was the first experience of a protest I have ever experienced and I am so thankful that I am a photographer by trade because it allowed me to capture raw emotion and also show the world that protests don’t have to be violent.
Of course you get the odd few who just use these peaceful protests as a way of masking their own need for anarchy and crime but Leeds absolutely smashed it on both occasions.
The first Black Lives Matter Protest in Leeds was at the Millennium Square where we all gathered to hear stories from people who have suffered in this day and age. I never expected it to be as moving as it was but it was something special.
The second one in Hyde Park was just as peaceful and just as powerful.
I have so much time for this movement and I’m glad I was able to capture the solidarity of this great northern city. My home.