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Protesters march in local rural community against George Floyd's death, racism

Posted at 3:01 PM, Jun 07, 2020

GLOUCESTER, Va. -- Protests continue throughout the nation and in Hampton Roads to protest the death of George Floyd.

Many of those protests have taken place in urban and populated areas and have also spilled into rural and smaller communities such as Gloucester.

“Even in small towns we need to stand up and show our support,” Robyn Sweet, an organizer with the local organization, Stand Up Against Racism, told News 3 before the protest started.

Protesters came together in front of the Gloucester County Library on Sunday. They had signs in their hands and shouted chants to protest the death of George Floyd.

Organizers and protesters added that this protest was to also combat racism.

"This county does not have a problem with police brutality, but it does have a problem with racism.” One organizer said, as he spoke to the crowd. “Some I’ve met, I shake my head – You try and talk to them, they don’t want to hear it, they want to live in their little bubble, they have this perfect county, this perfect world, I want to pop that bubble!"

A woman, who said she was a religious leader, also spoke to the crowd.

"I've been on the battlefield for a long time,” she said, “and there's no reason for why I see babies out here fighting for the same thing that my parents fought for."

They marched up Main Street until they reached the roundabout and turned back around. They marched along the sidewalks, continued chanting, one protester knocked on a bucket like a drum, and another protester handed out flowers to people.

The Gloucester County Sheriff’s Office escorted the crowd. Organizers made it clear to keep it peaceful out of caution to not risk violence as seen with some protests including one in Virginia Beach on May 31.

"Even this amount of people that came out this morning to show their support when they could be in bed sleeping,” Sweet said, “and I see all races, all colors, smiling faces, it just touches my heart."

The protest was peaceful overall. It was also one of two protests that Sunday as a second protest took place later in the day at 5:30 in front of the Gloucester Courthouse.