By Joseph Paola-North Star Reporter Intern
North Attleborough High School students Dev Gupta, Rohan Kohli, and Joey Perriello are holding a virtual bike race to help raise awareness about cases of police bias in America.
The group is working under the guidance of The Center for Police Equity a “nonprofit that aims to use data to reduce bias and policing racial bias, particularly against black and brown people,” as described by Kohli. Participants are encouraged to donate a self-determined amount of money for every mile they bike, but are able to participate in the event without any donations. The money raised will go to help support the efforts of the Center for Police Equity.
This is the second year that the event will run after Kohli was inspired by the events of last summer to take action.
“After George Floyd’s death, I was trying to figure out ways that I could help the community and support people of color,” said Kohli, “I contacted Joey Perriello, someone else that I know is really involved with the community and likes to organize things and from there we just started a race.”
Last year’s race managed to raise $2,500 to support the Center for Police Equity, but the group’s larger goal is to get the community involved in social justice. They are looking to take the lessons learned from the last event to run a larger competition with more community involvement.
The race will be held through the app Strava, where participants can join the Bike for Equality Club and track their miles during the event. The competition will be held between May 25 (the anniversary of Geroge Floyd’s death) and May 30. Top finishers will have a chance to win prizes, but everyone is encouraged to participate, no matter their skill level.
Kohl has a secondary hope for the event and the effect it will have on the community
“I would like to say that if you want to do something for your community, don’t hesitate to just try it. I remember when I thought I could never raise that much money in a race like that.” said Kohli, “I didn’t expect to be working with the senior Director of Development for a nationwide organization and all I did was send an email. So a lot of times, if you’re just willing to reach out, if you’re just willing to show some support, you can do whatever you want to do.”
Follow the Bike for Equality on Instagram or Facebook at @bikeforequalityma or their web site, www.policingequity.salsalabs.org/bikeforequality.