ROCHESTER, Minnesota - After participating in last week's protest at the Olmsted County Government Center, 17-year-olds Jaida Crowson and Yezi Gugsa wanted to organize their own. With help from other college and high school students from the area, the group organized a march from Martin Luther King Jr. Park to Mayo Park, with hundreds in attendance.
"I didn't think that there'd be so many people being here and honestly it feels great to see so many people in my community support me because at this moment it feels like the world is turning against us and seeing all this makes me feel liberated," Crowson said.
Starting at MLK Park, protesters made their way to Mayo Park as speakers spoke their thoughts and encouraged change. Gugsa said she was nervous to speak, but wanted to call others to action.
"My message today was to tell about my experiences growing up in Rochester as a black woman," Gugsa said. "Encourage people to change this because we've gone through two generations and nothing's changed."
Everyone at the protest was required to wear a mask. Gugsa said they took donations at the event, with funds going to help hold future protests.