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Demonstrators In Manchester Demand Aldermen Resign Over Social Media Posts

About 100 people gathered in front of Manchester City Hall on Tuesday night to demand the removal of two city aldermen. 

Black Lives Matter Manchester organized the protest after Aldermen Joseph Kelly Levasseur and Michael Porter reportedly made racist statements on Facebook.

Mayor Joyce Craig and seven other Manchester aldermen have called for Levasseur and Porter to resign, but both have refused to do so.

“It’s our responsibility to make sure that people are being held accountable, not only nationally, not only on the state level, but also on a city level,” organizer Erika Perez said.

Organizer and Manchester resident Tyrell Whitted says Levasseur called him a derogatory slur in a private message.

“It’s not okay for our government officials, our aldermen, to be throwing out racial slurs, making generalizing statements about groups of people,” Whitted said. “It’s their job to unify and maintain this city.”

The demonstration took place as the aldermen voted on the city’s budget for next year. They approved funding for 10 additional police officers.

Meanwhile, protesters also called for the city to divest funding from the Manchester Police Department.

“We do not need to be giving more money to a police department so they can have access to military grade weaponry,” organizer Jordan Thompson said. “We need to be reinvesting in our communities statewide and nationwide.”

Mary McIntyre is a senior producer at NHPR.

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