Governor Phil Scott today issued the following statement:
“Early this morning, in an effort to fuel hate and division, the Black Lives Matter painting in front of the State House was vandalized. This painting serves as an important reminder to make equity a priority and use this movement to drive real action and long overdue change. This act of vandalism only reinforces that we’re not immune to racism, divisiveness and hate in Vermont. We must redouble our efforts to dismantle systemic racism and bigotry, and stay united as Vermonters.
“I've directed the Vermont State Police and the Department of Buildings and General Services to assist the Montpelier Police Department in the investigation.”
Statement from Speaker Mitzi Johnson on the Vandalization of the Black Lives Matter Painting in Montpelier
“Yesterday, hundreds of Vermonters gathered in Montpelier in solidarity to paint BLACK LIVES MATTER on State Street in front of the capitol building. I humbly joined the painting crew. Noel Riby-Williams and Conor Casey did amazing work getting this project organized and in place in under a week. Thank you to both of them and all participants for creating such incredible work.
“Early this morning, it was vandalized. The Capitol Police, Buildings & General Services Staff, and Montpelier Police are working together to restore the painting and track down the perpetrators. While it is easy to be disgusted and angered by the vandalism of these anonymous cowards, for me their actions reinforce the need to address head-on the racism and white supremacy right here in our communities. That racism takes the form of subtle, perhaps unintended acts of bias, individual acts of hatred in the form of violence or vandalism, and systemic racism that, since the founding of our country and state, have stacked the very rules and expectations of our society against Black, Indigenous and People of Color. It is incumbent upon all of us to recognize it, name it, fight it, and right the centuries of wrong.”