Each year the Sydney Peace Foundation honours a nominee who has promoted “peace with justice”, human rights and non-violence. The human rights movement Black Lives Matter has won this year’s Sydney peace prize.
Global peacemakers and past award recipients applauded the Sydney Foundation’s choice as “bold” and “inspired.” 2008 winner Pat Dodson, hailed Black Lives Matter as a movement that stood against “ignorance, hostility, discrimination, or racism.”
The Black Lives Matter movement was founded by Patrisse Cullors, Alicia Garza and Opal Tometi after the 2013 acquittal of George Zimmerman, who stalked and killed 17-year-old Trayvon Marting in Sanford, Florida.
The Sydney Peace Prize jury applauded the movement "for building a powerful movement for racial equality, courageously reigniting a global conversation around state violence and racism. And for harnessing the potential of new platforms and power of people to inspire a bold movement for change at a time when peace is threatened by growing inequality and injustice."
It is the first time a movement and not a person has been awarded the prize, which is given out by the Sydney Peace Foundation every year since 1998.
The prize will be awarded to the three co-founders at a November ceremony in Sydney.