Garner Way Foundation
Mother, Advocate & Community Leader As the matriarch of one of Staten Island’s largest African-American families, Gwendolyn Carr has earned nationwide recognition as the mother of the late Eric Garner; an African American man murdered by the New York Police Department in July of 2014. Caught on camera, his death played an integral role in the ongoing conversation about police brutality in the United States, but Gwendolyn Carr’s story begins in South Brooklyn, where she lived most of her life. A longtime employee of both the United States Postal Service and New York City’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Mrs. Carr is now taking the city in which she raised her family to task by advocating for a full serving of justice. Not only for her own, but for families of police brutality at the hands of the NYPD. With 3 children, 15 grandchildren, and 6 great-grandchildren, her voice is that of several generations, all of whom have suffered greatly at the loss of their beloved Eric and with those who grieve for the mothers of victims who have not received extensive media coverage. As a conduit to the healing of others, the non-profit organization, “E.R.I.C. – Eliminating, Racism and Inequality Collectively” has been established. Within the realms of the foundation, Mrs. Carr facilitates the program titled, “This Stops Today”. This program seeks to provide ongoing support and education to victims of violence and to families who are suffering with tragedy and loss. Immediately before his death, Eric Garner said, “this stops today,” to express his frustration with being profiled and harassed for seemingly minor infractions. This program, named after his notable phrase, provides support for families who have also lost loved ones through similar acts of violence. “This Stops Today” offers a safe space for program participants to convey their stories of pain, disappointment, and despair. As the legal proceedings continue in the case of her son Eric, Gwen Carr’s maternal sensibilities will not allow a moment’s pause in the fight for accountability at the hands of lawmakers, and she will forever remain stridently dedicated to the cause.