A closer look at race and justice issues one year after the death of George Floyd

Today marks the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s death by a Minneapolis police officer.  A jury returned a guilty verdict last month against Derek Chauvin for kneeling on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes.

A new Axios-Ipsos poll examines how attitudes about race, police reform, and justice have changed over the last 12 months.  The findings are an eye-opener. Here’s an excerpt:

While Black Americans are less likely to experience being pulled over by the police (70%) than white Americans (83%), mostly due to lower rates of car ownership, they are much more likely to experience escalations with the police. Among those who have been pulled over…

Black Americans are more than three times more likely (14%) to report the police officer removed a weapon from its holster than a white person (4%). Hispanic Americans are twice as likely (9%) than whites to report an officer drawing a weapon. Black Americans are almost twice as likely (40%) as white Americans (22%) to report additional officers arriving on the scene. Hispanic respondents are again more likely to experience this (31%) compared to white people.

2. A year after the country experienced the largest civil rights protest in a generation, many Americans do not feel the country has made progress on race.

  • Only one in three Americans (35%) agree that the 2020 racial justice protests had a positive impact on society. A quarter (24%) have no opinion and two in five (40%) disagree with the statement.
  • Almost three in five (59%) Americans say the country needs to continue making changes to give Black Americans equal rights with white Americans.
  • Less than a quarter (23%) agree with the statement “America is not a racist country.”
  • Fewer than one in seven (13%) think that the treatment of Black Americans by police improved over the last year. Most (51%) think it is unchanged with a third (35%) saying it got worse.

Read more topline data from the Axios-Ipsos poll here.

Later this evening, to coincide with the anniversary of Floyd’s death, a new WRAL Documentary The Skin We’re In will take a look at racism in our state through the personal stories of people of color who’ve experienced discrimination, bias and microaggression first hand.

Long-time producer Clay Johnson joined Policy Watch’s Rob Schofield for a preview of the documentary. Click below to listen:


The Skin We’re In premieres on WRAL-TV in Raleigh and WILM-TV in Wilmington tonight at 7:30 p.m. It will be available for on-demand viewing on wraldocumentary.com, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Roku, Samsung Smart TV and YouTube.

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