Activist community

Boston activist community reacts to fraud charges against Monica Cannon-Grant – NBC Boston

As Boston activist Monica Cannon-Grant is charged with fraud, people who have supported her organization are speaking out on Tuesday.

Cannon-Grant was the force behind the citywide marches following the death of George Floyd, and she was a vocal presence on TV and social media. His organization, Violence in Boston, was created to raise funds to reduce violence, raise awareness, and support community causes.

“I’ve been on several of those walks,” said Darnell Williams, former CEO of the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts. “It was legit, and it was believable.”

After someone tried to kill Monica Cannon-Grant’s son, she left nursing school, became an activist, and started Violence in Boston Inc. to help victims of violence. Last week, the organization opened its first physical space to provide free legal and mental assistance, food pantry and other services to victims and families in need.

He says he was supportive of her work, but she may have fallen victim to temptation, power and money.

“It’s a very sad turn of events for someone who worked very hard on the front line,” Williams said.

But others say they saw it coming.

“Greed and ego,” said community activist Jamarhl Crawford. “I think that’s a very dangerous combination. I think that should be a lesson for anyone who is an activist or an organizer.”

Crawford had a long-running feud with Cannon-Grant.

“A lot of people were warned, a lot of those people should have known better, because a lot of those people are respectable people,” he said.

Monica Cannon-Grant, a leading figure in Boston’s activist community, and her husband are accused of spending their nonprofit’s funds on themselves.

Crawford says he was a vocal critic of Cannon-Grant and warned people against donations.

“I don’t see this as a moment of victory,” he said. “I consider this a tragedy, she is a woman of the community who had promise and potential.”