Protesters block intersection in the Pearl District with demonst - KPTV - FOX 12

Protesters block intersection in the Pearl District with demonstration

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

Protesters blocked the intersection of Northwest Everett Street and Northwest 13th Avenue with bikes, tables and themselves as shoppers were out for Black Friday deals at stores in the Pearl District.

The event, organized by the group Don’t Shoot Portland, also offered food and clothes for those in need.

Other organizations, including the local Black Lives Matter group and Portland’s Resistance, also participated in the protests.

Ben Pollak, one of the protesters with Don't Shoot Portland, said it was time to get the community to talk about race.

"It's time to do something," he said. "We need to have a national dialogue of racial issues and exploration and the role of white people."

Portland police worked to reroute traffic around the area, but drivers were quick to share their displeasure with the demonstration.

Lisa Davey works near the location of the Friday's protest and said she does not see the protest having an impact.

"I feel like a nuisance and it's annoying," she said.."I don't think its accomplish anything, not bringing awareness to anything. People are just getting together and hanging out."

One of the people protesting told FOX 12 that the intersection was chosen because it was the location where in 2006 police arrested James Chasse, a mentally ill man who later died while in police custody.

Chasse’s family later settled with the city for $1.6 million.

Protesters, calling the demonstration a “block party,” stayed in the intersection handing out clothes and food to the homeless until 5:30 p.m.

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