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Corvallis health care workers hold 'white coats for black lives' protest
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Corvallis health care workers hold 'white coats for black lives' protest

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More than 100 health care professionals gathered outside the Corvallis Clinic’s office on Northwest Elks Drive Monday evening to show their support for the Black Lives Matter movement.

The participants — many wearing lab coats or hospital scrubs — stood on the grass beside Northwest Elks Drive and held signs bearing messages such as “Black lives matter” and “Make racism wrong again,” starting at 5:30 p.m.

Dr. Robin McKelvey, who organized the “white coats for black lives” demonstration, read quotes from Robert F. Kennedy and Scott Woods calling on all members of society to take a stand against racism.

The group knelt in the grass for eight minutes and 46 seconds to commemorate the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died in police custody after a white Minneapolis officer held him down for nearly nine minutes with a knee on his neck.

Most of the initial participants moved down to the bottom of the hill to continue the demonstration on the side of Highway 99W, where a steady stream of commuter traffic passed by.

Dr. Mari Goldner, a sleep medicine specialist, said the group wanted to show solidarity with the Black Lives Matter demonstrations that have sprung up around the country and around the world since Floyd’s May 25 killing.

“It’s just people standing up,” Goldner said, “trying to stand up and bear witness and make this a turning point for our country.”

Reporter Bennett Hall can be contacted at bennett.hall@lee.net or 541-812-6111. Follow him on Twitter at @bennetthallgt.

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