49ers Donating $1M to Organizations 'Creating Change' After George Floyd's Death

Blake SchusterAnalyst IMay 31, 2020

An exterior of Levi's Stadium is shown before an NFL preseason football game between the San Francisco 49ers and the Los Angeles Chargers in Santa Clara, Calif., Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)
Tony Avelar/Associated Press

The San Francisco 49ers announced Saturday night a $1 million donation to "local and national organizations who are creating change" following days of unrest around the country in reaction to the death of George Floyd.

Niners CEO Jed York released a statement in which he noted "heinous acts have been committed in recent weeks."

Jed York @JedYork


"Before we are able to realize impactful change, we must first have the courage and compassion as human beings to come together and knowledge the problem," York wrote. "Black men, women, children and other oppressed minorities continue to be systemically discriminated against."

On Monday, Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, was stopped by police after allegedly using a counterfeit bill to purchase a pack of cigarettes in Minneapolis. Police officer Derek Chauvin was recorded placing his knee on Floyd's neck for more than eight minutes. Floyd was later pronounced dead at an area hospital. Chauvin and three other officers were fired from their jobs, and Chauvin currently faces charges of third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

As video of the encounter began to spread through the media, protests—some violent—began forming around the country with athletes like LeBron James, Jaylen Brown and Colin Kaepernick calling for justice for Floyd.

Kaepernick was playing for the 49ers in 2016 when he began protesting police brutality and social injustice against minorities by kneeling during the national anthem.

The quarterback's actions kicked off a firestorm culturally and in the league with Commissioner Roger Goodell later expressing his belief that all players should stand for the anthem. Kaepernick would file a grievance against the NFL, saying it colluded to keep him unsigned after he opted out of his contract with the Niners following the 2016 season in search of a new deal. The two sides reached an undisclosed settlement in 2019.

In 2017, wide receiver Anquan Boldin, Malcolm Jenkins and Byron White formed the Players Coalition as a means to work toward social justice and racial equality.

Eric Reid, who participated in Kaepernick's protests in 2016 and the seasons after, ripped the Niners' donation Saturday shortly after it was announced.

"Nobody wants your money Jed. We want justice." Reid tweeted. "We've always wanted justice. Y'all are truly diluted."