DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – ​At protests across Dallas County, thousands of people have packed together.

Some are masked, many are not. ​

It has county health officials reminding ​people the coronavirus remains a significant threat. ​

Some protesters are taking extra precautions.

Anita Harris being one of them.

“I figured that the numbers would go up,” she said. “When I decided to go protest, I had already put it in my mind to get tested because while we do have this other ​virus that is called racism that is rising and that is continuously rising and has always been there. COVID has never gone anywhere.”​

Dallas County reported 312 positive cases of ​COVID-19 on Thursday, another single-day record.

“From the infection control standpoint, we’re concerned,” Dallas County HHS Director Dr. Phil Huang said.

While county health officials say the health impact of these protests won’t be seen for weeks, ​they’re encouraging those participating to get tested. ​

North Texas Protesters Urged To Get Tested For Coronavirus; New Testing Sites Open Specifically For Them

“That’s why I know we’ve made available some of the testing sites yesterday ​and today in particular, some walkup sites at American Airlines Center,” he said. “Our other ​testing sites are being made available to persons who participated.”

Dallas protest (CBS 11)


Harris says there’s no excuse to not get tested.​

On Thursday, she visited a “Together We Test” clinic.

The initiative put together by the faith-based nonprofit Project Unity offers free testing in underserved communities to anyone in need.

“I encourage anyone who has been to a protest to go get tested,” she said. “It’s important.”​

Dr. Huang said if you’ve attended a protest, whether you are showing ​symptoms or not you should get tested.

It’s a good idea to wait about five to 14 days.

Erin Jones