SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - Following a morning of protests for protest organizer Tianna Arata, the San Luis Obispo County NAACP held a youth empowerment rally outside the county courthouse.
Arata made her first court appearance Thursday, preceding the rally.
The San Luis Obispo County NAACP released a statement saying it believes the arrest of Arata was part of an effort to derail the youth movement.
"She's on our minds and on our hearts," said Alexis Smith, the education committee chair for the San Luis Obispo County NAACP. "I think it's important to support the youth."
The organization says it stands in support of the youth movement for equality.
"This is about how to train young people how to be civically engaged in our democracy," said Stephen Vines, president of the San Luis Obispo County NAACP. "They might as well start young," he added.
This rally is part of a monthly series put on by the naacp until election day. Each rally focuses on a different educational topic."
The focus of Thursday's rally was youth empowerment.
"Youth is the biggest voting block there is," said Vines. "The world is in their hands. They need to take it."
Young people attending say they learned a lot from the speakers.
Cristina Golubovich, a rally attendee, said she found much value in the speech about conflict resolution. "It's good to have these conversations," she said. "It might be uncomfortable, but this is a new habit that we can form and... really rebuild this trust between people we might have differences of opinion with."
"I think that youth empowerment is extremely important," said attendee Samantha Smith. "I am young, and I think that more young people need to feel just as passionate about things like this and really get involved in their communities."