Boston is gearing up for a series of rallies this week following the guilty verdicts returned against Derek Chauvin in the killing of George Floyd. GBH News senior investigative reporter Phillip Martin was on the ground covering the protests that followed Floyd's death last summer. He was in Nubian Square yesterday talking to activists, who he says are experiencing a mixture of relief, surprise and sadness. He joined Joe Mathieu on Morning Edition today to talk about the reactions.

Martin says many activists hope that the widespread conversations about systemic racism will bring about a renewed look at police violence more locally, shine a light on cases like Easton’s DJ Henry and renew a push for criminal justice reform at the state and city level.

Martin also noted that all the major mayoral candidates in Boston are talking about police reform.

”So we've come a long way. The fact that we're even having this discussion, Joe, is amazing,” Martin said. “The fact that the president of the United States is considering a George Floyd bill that was passed in Congress last summer by Democratic majority is an example, without question, of progress. But there's also the question of, again, the killing we just saw last night in Columbus, Ohio. And others — the shooting death of a young Black man just a few miles from where George Floyd's trial was being held, are examples that there's still a long way to go."

WATCH: Phillip Martin on local reactions to the Chauvin verdict