'Black Lives Do Matter' mural repainted around Fayetteville Market House following removal backlash

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (WTVD) -- "Black Lives Do Matter. End Racism Now." Those words are being repainted around the Market House. Weeks ago, contractors removed the mural which caused city council members to receive backlash.

"You did it a week after thugs stormed the Capitol. You did a week before MLK day and weeks before Black History Month. I thought it was insensitive to bring it up at this particular time," said Myah Warren, a 23-year-old community activist and now human relations commissioner.

'Black Lives Do Matter' and 'End Racism Now' mural to be painted around Fayetteville's Market House

Warren was at the forefront of demonstrations in downtown Fayetteville last summer calling for police reform and accountability following the killing of George Floyd.

When the mural around the Market House was initially installed, demonstrators like Warren saw it as a temporary solution.

Temporary 'Black Lives Do Matter' mural around Market House in Fayetteville removed after 6 months

"I felt as if it was a way of in unison saying this is what the city of Fayetteville believes. We believe racism is an issue" said Warren. "It will not stand in the city of Fayetteville and so this is our way of allowing that message to be put out into the public."

City council backtracked and voted to re-install the mural at no cost to taxpayers. They insisted the mural was temporary, but understood the outrage that followed.

Mayor Mitch Colvin says this mural will remain in place for at least six months.

Fayetteville to temporarily reinstall 'Black Lives Do Matter' street art surrounding Market House

"Hopefully by then we've asked staff to come back with a permanent location for the BLM mural or a social justice plaza or some other things to keep race at the forefront of our community and try to unify us," said Mayor Colvin.

Community members like Warren hope the city and its residents find common ground on the issue.

"I'm really proud. For once we can all get on the same page and do something to help better the community," said Warren.
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