MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Boots-on-the-ground groups will be ready during the trial of former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin.

Groups like We Push for Peace, A Mother’s Love, and Salem, Inc. are working together not only for security, but also to provide help to young people looking for a better way of life.

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Tre Pollard has been developing relationships with youth in the community for years. He was out on the front lines during the unrest that followed the death of George Floyd.

“During Floyd riots [I was] letting them know ‘I stand with you but I’m not going to stand with nonsense.’ It’s just that simple,” said Tre Pollard.

He and a coalition of boots-on-the-ground organizations have plans to reprise that role.

“We are there to try to make sure that these young men and women are not going to make a decision or a choice that is probably going to hurt them for the rest of their life,” Pollard said.

A Mother’s Love and Salem, Inc. will join Push for Peace in support of law enforcement to make sure things stay calm before, during, and after the trial.

“Everybody has a right to protest that goes without saying, but being destructive to landmarks and businesses, that has nothing to do with this.” Pollard said.

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These groups are also against outsiders coming inside the city with bad intentions.

“What we’re not going to tolerate is individuals coming to town and tearing this city down again. That’s an absolute no, no,” Pollard said.

Pollard believes having We Push for Peace provide security during the Chauvin trial will help facilitate conversations amongst the crowds that show up that will help build community, not destroy it. He says hundreds of men and women will be there for the community to offer support for jobs, housing, and mental health care.

“To continuously interact with some of those young men and women who might be downtown and will be seeking some services that We Push for Peace, Salem, Inc and a Mother’s Love offer so I’m anxious from that regard, “Pollard said.

They will also be on hand to provide comfort for the people having a hard time dealing with what is going on, in an effort to help law enforcement keep the peace.

“I am a part of this community and I love this community, which is why I’m going to protect this community,” Pollard said.

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He says keeping the peace during the trial can only be done with law enforcement working in conjunction with boots-on-the-ground groups.

Reg Chapman