MERRICK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — There was a massive protest on Long Island that stretched for miles Thursday.
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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.NYC Hospitality Alliance: Mayor De Blasio 'Grinch' For Vaccine Mandate That May Keep Tourists With Young Children Away
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.MORE NEWS: Hate Crimes Spike Citywide, New NYPD Data Reveals
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.