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Hundreds show solidarity at Black Lives Matter vigil in Kingston, Ont.

Hundreds show solidarity at Black Lives Matter vigil in Kingston
WATCH: Activists at Kingston's rally say racism is not just a problem in the United States. 

Hundreds of people gathered in Kingston, Ont. Tuesday afternoon for a Black Lives Matter vigil, saying racism is not just a problem in the United States.

The vigil was to acknowledge and mourn the lives lost to anti-Black racism and to demand justice.

Supports fill McBurney Park, for a peaceful vigil in support of Black Lives Matter
Supports fill McBurney Park, for a peaceful vigil in support of Black Lives Matter. Global News

The peaceful rally in McBurney Park was organized after a week of riots across the U.S., following the death of George Floyd.

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The 46 year-old Black man was killed in Minneapolis after a white police officer knelt on his neck during an arrest, an incident that was caught on cellphone video.

READ MORE: Black Lives Matter solidarity march planned for Kitchener on Wednesday

“We need to prosecute the people who have done injustice to black people,” said Kayla Oaks, holding a sign that reads ‘Prosecute Killer Cops’, “not just in the states where it is very prevalent, but also here in Canada where it is not highly recognized as well.”

Kayla Oaks holds a sign, Prosecute Killer Cops. Black Lives Matter
Kayla Oaks holds a sign, Prosecute Killer Cops. Black Lives Matter. Global News

There have been many peaceful demonstrations and vigils like the one at McBurney Park across the United States and Canada.

Local organizers recited the names of Black, Indigenous people and persons of colour who have been victims of police brutality in this country, and observed a moment of silence.

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Many wore masks and held signs of support
Many wore masks and held signs of support. Global News

“We have worked within our community for so long to buildup those partnerships and that credibility and that trust and we want to ensure that continues,” says Kingston Police chief Antje McNeely.

“These kinds of things that happen worldwide, we want to ensure that it doesn’t reflect negatively within our own community.”

READ MORE: Alberta leaders denounce racism as Black community calls for action

Just hours before the Black Lives Matter vigil Tuesday evening, the chief along with the Kingston Police Association released a letter to the community saying, in part, “We stand united and in solidarity with our community and those experiencing racism and discrimination in all its ugly forms.”

Supporters at Black Lives Matter vigil at McBurney Park, Kingston
Supporters at Black Lives Matter vigil at McBurney Park, Kingston. Global News

The force says they are committed to a culture of change amid struggles over racism in North America.

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“It means a lot for future generations to be able to progress forward in society and not have this block in between … division of sides,” says Oaks.

Organizers recited the names of black, indigenous and persons of colour who have been victims of police brutality in Canada
Organizers recited the names of black, indigenous and persons of colour who have been victims of police brutality in Canada. Global News

Organizers told the large crowd that the vigil was just the start, expressing hope that the solidarity shown would live on in the activism that will need to continue.