(CNN) - In a forceful statement on its website, the ice cream company Ben & Jerry’s called on Americans to “dismantle white supremacy” and “grapple with the sins of our past.”
It comes as nationwide protests against racial injustice stretch into their eighth day. They were sparked by the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, at the hands of a white police officer in Minneapolis.
The ice cream maker said Floyd’s death was the result of “inhumane police brutality that is perpetuated by a culture of white supremacy.”
The company also asked President Donald Trump to disavow white supremacists and nationalist groups that overtly support him.
“We call upon President Trump, elected officials, and political parties to commit our nation to a formal process of healing and reconciliation ... The world is watching America’s response,” the company said.
In its statement, Ben & Jerry’s announced support of the creation of a national task force aimed at stopping racial violence and increasing police accountability. They also called for the Department of Justice to “reinvigorate” its Civil Rights Division and for Congress to pass legislation that would commission a study on the history of racial discrimination, spanning from slavery to now.
“We have to use this moment to accelerate our nation’s long journey towards justice and a more perfect union,” said the company’s statement.
Ben & Jerry’s had a long history of political activism under founders Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield.
It was sold to British-Dutch consumer goods giant Unilever in 2000.