Friday, 11 November 2011

#OccupySLC Update: 11/11/11

A quick roundup of news summaries for today so far: KSL  here  , Fox 13  here  , KUTV  here  .

An itinerant man named Mike died last night at the #OccupySLC main camp in Pioneer Park. While an official cause of death hasn't been established yet (as far as I know), that hasn't stopped the Chief of the Salt Lake City Police Department from publicly speculating, or some local media sources from conjecturing about, drugs or an indoor propane heater.

This happened the day after a large nocturnal fight brought the SLPD to Pioneer Park, where one man was charged with aggravated assault and a few more received minor alcohol charges. "In response to these events," Chief Burbank has ordered all #OccupySLC camps vacated by tomorrow night. This includes the second #Occupy camp, which was not involved in the Pioneer Park incident(s) in any way.

Today at 2 PM, an emergency GA was held in Pioneer Park.

This was followed by a series of working groups, and a concise but informative presentation by representatives affiliated with the ACLU on what your rights are and are not with regards to la policia.

This was followed by another GA to adjust and unanimously approve a statement to the media from #OccupySLC, and a brief commemorative candlelight vigil at 5 PM MST.

The speakers included the Reverend Tom Goldsmith from the First Unitarian Church, a homeless man whose name I did not catch who knew Mike, and Dr. Rebecca Hall.

#OccupySLC's hub site is  here  . You can go there and read the press release for yourself. Here's an excerpt:

We at Occupy Salt Lake City are deeply saddened by the tragedy that has happened. Our neighbor who died was a volunteer in our kitchen and supported the Occupy Movement's concerns about the system. It is a tragedy that society allows so many incidents like this to happen every year. 
In 2010, 54 of our fellow Salt Lake City citizens died due to issues related to homelessness. In 2009, it was 58. 
We understand the city's concerns about this situation. Let's be clear: we have been providing food, shelter, and health care services. To react by shutting this down will lead to more people dying alone, cold, hungry and without shelter. A productive approach from the city would be to provide more resources to solve these problems: eliminating our assembly is combative and counterproductive.

I'll have more tomorrow from one or both camps as sundown approaches and the SLPD's deadline gets closer.

I don't think the SLPD is bluffing: a few hours after Burbank gave his ultimatum, the City came by and re-posted the "NO TRESPASSING" and "NO CAMPING" signs that have been absent since #OSLC was granted a permit to #Occupy the park:

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