MERRICK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — There was a massive protest on Long Island that stretched for miles Thursday.

There was a massive Black Lives Matter protest on Long Island that stretched for miles on June 4, 2020. (Credit: CBS2)

Thousands of people rallied and marched through neighborhoods in Merrick.

They blocked traffic on Sunrise Highway.

Protesters had the support of essential workers, who raised their fists in support.

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Families with children stood in solidarity, and the demonstration continued even as night fell.

“If you can’t say black lives matter, then you’re saying black lives don’t matter. That’s what you’re saying and silence is the same as violence,” one protester said.

“There is time for a change, and it has to be now,” another protester said.

Police say the protests were mostly peaceful.

In Hempstead, meanwhile, about 500 people marched down the Southern State Parkway for about two hours Thursday evening. State Police say there were no injuries and no arrests.

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