WASHINGTON — Young people have been at the forefront of protests across the country and in the District.
A group known as Concerned Citizens D.C. was formed by a group of young people who are all under the age of 25.
Its mission is to change the way police are policing and improve the quality of life for Black people in the nation’s capital.
WUSA9 first learned of the power behind Concerned Citizens D.C. as Ty Hobson-Powell rallied protesters in a video captured during demonstrations.
“We will not get to progress through one person,” Hobson-Powell said through a megaphone. “No one person will be the reason why we get there, but together we will.”
“We saw that the protests had a lot of energy going on, but that energy wasn’t energy that was being directed toward something,” the young activist told WUSA9.
Hobson-Powell, Seun Babalola, and four other organizers, one of whom is a Parkland survivor, created Concerned Citizens D.C. to give everyday people a voice.
“Giving people something to believe in is probably the biggest thing. When you look at the first week of protests, there was a whole lot of energy out there – a whole bunch of people just passionate and filled with a lot of emotions,” Babalola said. “I think being able to use that, harness that into not only bringing people together but creating real long-lasting change is the best of both worlds.”
The change the group of organizers wants to see first is outlined in 10 demands which include several police and criminal justice reforms, D.C. Statehood, and defunding the D.C. police department.
“We’ve been able to kind of get more on the inside in terms of meeting with DNC leaders, meeting with policy folks who can actually help us implement this change,” Babalola explained.
“Us going out there, hitting the front lines as regular people, as concerned teachers all it takes is having that concern to affect that change,” Hobson-Powell said.
The group looking toward creating the "Concerned Citizens Act" – or a second bill of rights -- which would be a modern look at the current bill of rights and adapt to many of the issues people are currently facing.