Kanye West Joins Protesters Marching in His Hometown of Chicago

Kanye West has created a 529 college savings plan to fully cover tuition for George Floyd's 6-year-old daughter Gianna

Kanye West is showing his support by joining protesters from his hometown marching in the wake of George Floyd's death.

The rapper was photographed joining demonstrators in Chicago on Thursday.

Donning a black face mask, West, 42, wore a dark gray hoodie, tan pants and what appeared to be Yeezy Season 2 sole boots.

In a video shared by a reporter for NBC Chicago, Trina Orlando, West stands as a fellow marcher yells: "We need everybody to stand where they are because we are going to march."

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Kanye West. Marat Shaya
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Kanye West. Marat Shaya
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Kanye West. Marat Shaya

West's marching comes amid continued, nationwide protests against police brutality and systemic racism after Floyd, an unarmed black man, died after a white police officer pinned him to the ground with a knee on his neck as Floyd said repeatedly he couldn't breathe and pleaded for the officer to stop.

The officer in question, Derek Chauvin, was previously charged with third-degree murder and third-degree manslaughter charges but this was upgraded to second-degree murder on Wednesday.

Formal criminal charges have also been filed in Minnesota against the three other policemen ⁠— Thomas Lane, 37, Tou Thao, 34, and J. Alexander Kueng, 26 ⁠— who were present at the time of George Floyd's May 25 death, according to a warrant reviewed by PEOPLE. They have been charged with aiding and abetting unintentional second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter.

This isn't the first time West has shown his support for Floyd.

Recently, the rapper, 42, has created a 529 college savings plan to fully cover tuition for Floyd's 6-year-old daughter Gianna, a representative for West confirms to PEOPLE. In addition, he donated $2 million to support the families of and the legal funds for Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor.

West's representative says he has also donated to several black-owned businesses in crisis in his hometown of Chicago and nationwide.

RELATED VIDEO: George Floyd's Daughter Gianna, 6, Says 'Daddy Changed the World'

Arbery, an unarmed black man, was fatally shot while jogging in broad daylight on Feb. 23 after being chased down a suburban neighborhood street in Brunswick, Georgia, by two white men, Gregory McMichael and his son, Travis. The McMichaels confronted Arbery with two firearms after they saw him exercising, and Travis fatally shot him, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said.

Last month, video showing how the 25-year-old was shot circulated social media and sparked nationwide outrage and renewed interest in the case. Gregory, 64, and Travis, 34, have since been charged with murder and aggravated assault but have not yet entered pleas.

Taylor, meanwhile, was killed in her Louisville, Ky., apartment on March 13 when police served a "no-knock" warrant and shot her when her boyfriend fired his own permitted weapon fearing for his life. Taylor was a 26-year-old black woman and aspiring nurse working as an EMT.

To help combat systemic racism, consider learning from or donating to these organizations:

• Campaign Zero (joincampaignzero.org) which works to end police brutality in America through research-proven strategies.

ColorofChange.org works to make government more responsive to racial disparities.

• National Cares Mentoring Movement (caresmentoring.org) provides social and academic support to help black youth succeed in college and beyond.

Updated by
Janine Rubenstein
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Janine Rubenstein is Editor-at-Large at PEOPLE and host of PEOPLE Every Day podcast, a daily dose of breaking news, pop culture and heartwarming human interest stories. Formerly Senior Editor of music content, she's also covered crime, human interest and television news throughout her many years with the brand. Prior to PEOPLE she's written for Essence, The Cape Times newspaper and Los Angeles Magazine among others. On-screen Rubenstein can be found featured on shows like Good Morning America and Entertainment Tonight and she routinely hosts PEOPLE and Entertainment Weekly's star-studded Red Carpet Live specials. Follow the San Francisco native, Black Barbie collector and proud mom of two on Instagram and Twitter @janinerube

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