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Preparations for Protest

October 15, 2011 in News

In an effort to help everyone feel prepared for our first protest on Sunday, several assembly members have contributed the following ideas and information on what to expect.

Where to park/transportation

We are recommending that people either park in the least used areas of the parking lot at Thruway or on the Queen Street side of Miller Park. There will be other events at Miller Park that day (where people have paid for use of the shelters) so we need to be sure we only park where the Department requested. Please recognize that Thruway is actually private property, so if you are asked by the management to move your vehicle, you should do so. (Thanks to Jan Meltzer, who scoped out the Thruway parking lot for us, and Nathan Welling, who contacted the head of Parks and Recreation)

If possible, car pool with other members. If you are willing to drive, or need a ride, please post your general starting point to the Facebook GA page with whether you need a ride or are offering rides.

Signs:

You are encouraged to bring your own sign to the protest.  If you are unable to bring your own sign, some will be available on site. Some suggestions for wording are given below.

  • “I believe in the separation of corporation and state”
  • “The American Dream should be for everyone, not just 1%”
  • “If we were rewarding succes, the working poor would not exist”
  • “Occupy: This is what Democracy looks like”
  • “Let’s try trickle UP economics for a change”
  • “For Sale: America”
  • “Let’s focus on 1 war at a time, how about the war on poverty?”
  • “Separation of Corporation and State”
  • “Get your Business out of my Politician” ;)
  • “I pay more taxes than General Electric”
  • “The 99% is TOO BIG TO FAIL- where’s our bailout?”
  • “I can’t afford a lobbyist: I’m the 99%”
  • “If the people of this nation understood our banking and monetary system, I believe there would be a revolution tomorrow morning- Henry Ford”
  • “The Obama we elected would be out here with us.”
  • “I care about YOU.”
  • “We are Not a mob We are You!”
  • “YOU are the 99%”
  • “Join Us Don’t Fear Us”

More signs from #OWS can be found at http://www.buzzfeed.com/fjelstud/the-best-signs-from-occupy-wall-street

According to city regulations, signs must meet the following guidelines:

Written or printed placards or signs [may be] made of cardboard no thicker than one-fourth inch. Supports for such signs or posters shall be made of nonmetallic material no wider than three and one-half inches and no thicker than three-fourths inch.

Safety and well-being

For your safety, we ask that everyone arrive sober and refrain from bringing weapons or any illegal items (drugs, alcohol, etc.)

We are attempting to have a legal observer present to provide third-party information should any incident arise with police or counter-protesters/hecklers. The protest will also be videoed and photos will be taken by Steve Orcutt and Drew Davis. The police can photograph and take video at demonstrations and may likely do so. This is a common, legal practice and should not be cause for concern.

The City regulations on a picket (this is the city’s term for what we are doing Sunday) are as follows:

Pickets shall be restricted to the use of the outermost half of the sidewalk or other public way nearest the street and shall not at any time nor in any way obstruct, interfere with, or block persons entering or exiting from vehicles; persons crossing streets or otherwise using the public way; the entrance or exit to any building or access to property abutting the street or sidewalk; or pedestrian or vehicular traffic.

It shall be unlawful for any person to conduct or participate in any picket or to unreasonably hamper, obstruct, or interfere with any picket so as to create a public nuisance or endanger the public peace or constitute a substantial hazard to public safety.

How to behave non-violently

We will be giving non-violence training on site, but it would be a good idea to familiarize yourself with principles of non-violence ahead of time. Some guidelines and principles can be found here.

The General Assembly

The General Assembly will follow the protest.  We have been given permission to assemble in the amphitheater area or in open space at Miller Park. (Thanks again Nathan Welling for getting us this permission.)  We will likely begin around 2:30-3pm, which will allow time for the protestors to reach the park from the picket area. You may bring blankets or chairs and something to eat. If you wish to share food that is fine, but we will not likely have any access to electricity or grills since there are two groups who have paid for access to the shelters that day.

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