Thousands of people, stretched across miles of Seattle streets, marched in the rain Friday for a statewide general strike. Some businesses also closed, a show of solidarity as protests against systemic racism continue across the country.
Seattle’s demonstration, a silent march meant to honor lives lost to police brutality, was organized by Black Lives Matter Seattle-King County. The group asked people to stay home from work — or at least away from those video conferences — and instead spend their time and energy by marching, educating themselves, or taking other direct action.
The silent march also aimed to help slow the spread of the coronavirus, as demonstrations without chanting mean fewer droplets expelled into the air.
The event in Seattle started at 1 p.m. at Judkins Park. Despite a strikingly large crowd — thousands, if not tens of thousands — it was quiet enough to hear someone clear their throat 20 feet away.
The group followed suit from other protesters in recent weeks, issuing a list of demands. Though Friday’s list was more focused than some others: a call for Seattle to divest $100 million from the police force, and invest in community health and other social programs. They also demand an end to a youth jail project in the city — which was approved in recent years by voters.
Below is a collection of scenes from Friday’s march by KNKX’s Parker Miles Blohm.