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    PRESS CONFERECE Friday, Decmeber 16, 2011, 8:15 a.m. Boston Municipal Court, 24 New Chardon St., Boston

    In the early hours of October 11, 2011, the Boston Police, acting on Mayor Menino’s orders to clear an Occupy Boston encampment from the Rose Kennedy Greenway, arrested and removed 142 peacefully assembled participants and supporters of the movement, plus one journalist and one National Lawyers Guild (NLG) Legal Observer. Those arrested were charged with the crimes of trespassing and unlawful assembly.

    At their arraignments, many arrestees chose to accept the District Attorney’s offer to convert their criminal charges to a civil infraction and to pay a fine. Twenty individuals rejected this offer and pled not guilty to the charges. Nineteen of them will be in court on Dec. 16th for a pretrial conference. Lawyers from the Massachusetts chapter of the National Lawyers Guild are representing the group in their fight against these criminal charges.

    Those in court on Friday reject the contention that they committed any crimes, and maintain that the police raid and mass arrest on the morning of October 11th was a violation of their constitutional rights of free speech and peaceable assembly. The criminal charge of trespassing is untenable in light of the fact that the Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy had allowed Occupy Boston to be present on the Greenway. Further, the 2008 legistlative act which authorizes the Conservancy—a private, non-profit organization formed under the aegis of and responsible to the public, taxpayer-funded, Massachusetts Department of Transportation—to oversee and manage the space where the arrests occurred, mandates that “the greenway shall be treated as a public park and a traditional open public forum without limiting free speech” (Acts and Resolves of Massachusetts 2008, Ch. 308, Sec. 3a). As such, the allegation that individuals gathering in support of a cause were, in fact, doing anything other than exactly what this city space was designed for, is unsupportable. The October 11th protest was a peaceable assembly of activists exercising their constitutional right of free speech. The fact that these rights were violated is intolerable. That these rights were violated in Boston, a city that prides itself on a longstanding rejection of tyranny in favor of liberty, is profoundly disconcerting. Arrests of those who legally assemble to exercise their First Amendment rights must not happen again.

    WikiLeaks Truck vs. Boston Police

    On the eve of our big court date, this video is more relevant than ever.

    GA Ratifies Declaration of Safety and Health

    The General Assembly of Occupy Boston passed the following proposal on the morning of November 30, 2011:

    Declaration of Safety and Health

    Occupy Boston will be proactive and self-regulate to meet all reasonable safety and health inspection standards of the city. We also invite city and ISD inspectors to come to Occupy Boston General Assembly, our decision making body, to announce their concerns.


    Greetings from Philly

    Earlier today, the Occupy Boston Media Working Group received the following email from a member of Occupy Philadelphia. We would like to share it with the wider Occupy Boston community.

    Greetings from Philly, to my old home, Boston.

    Tonight, Occupy Philadelphia faces what many occupations across the country have faced over the course of the last two months. Mayor Nutter has issued a 5 pm deadline for us to permanently vacate Dilworth Plaza – the public space in front of City Hall – to make way for a $50 million dollar construction project that will turn this public space into a pseduo-private space. Maybe it will become Philly’s personal big dig – overdue and overbudget. We realize that the narrative from Occupy Philly may be confusing. Who’s working with the city? Who’s this other group that has a permit for that space across the street? Ignore it. All of it. Like other occupations, we have our own internal demons and people working against us – which invariably includes the city. The same tired old tales have been regurgitated in our media – the anarchist boogeyman has been invoked, the radicals have supposedly taken over. As a member of the Legal Collective, the group empowered to act as liaisons to the City, I can state with certainty that it is the City who, while waxing prophetic about open communication, have remained reticent.

    Like Occupy Boston, Occupy Philly is made of a diverse group of people from all walks of life. We feed 1500 meals a day to those in need. We have provided tents, sleeping bags, and clothing to those who need it. Everyone – the homeless who lived on the plaza before occupation, occupiers, part-time occupiers, members of working groups – participates in our direct democratic process to make decisions that affect our newfound community. A voice has been given to the voiceless. Since the official notice of eviction was given on Friday, we have become even closer, and even stronger. Our people’s mic has taken on new life. We are strong. We are not simply this plaza, or the plaza across the street. We are not simply an encampment. We are prefiguring a new society. The city may remove our tents and our bodies tonight, but we will come back. Maybe not to this space, but we will be back – rejuvenated and stronger.

    On the night of Oct. 11, I sat in front of my computer, clutching my phone, watching the livestream from Occupy Boston and reading text messages from my friends who were out there risking arrest. I couldn’t be up there in person, linking arms, but the least I could do was support Occupy Boston from afar and post about what was happening on facebook and twitter. I ask for no more and no less from the Occupiers in the city I called home for 8 years. Watch our livestream. Tell your friends. Post about it. Ask friends in Philadelphia to come out and show their support, to get themselves to city hall (right now! but at least by 3pm!) to bring signs and stand witness. Our strength is in numbers. Our strength is in our goals. Our strength is in our idea.

    Because you cannot evict an idea.

    In Solidarity,
    Diane, member of the Occupy Philly Legal Collective and Boston ex-pat

    Information about today’s eviction planning

    Women’s Statement

    The following statement was read by members of the Occupy Boston Women’s Caucus during the General Assembly on Saturday, November 18:

    We, the women of Occupy Boston, are here to tell you that two months is far too long to have occupied without a feminist perspective.

    Downwardly-mobile middle-class white men are finally realizing what women and people of color have known for too long. Capitalism is destructive. Capitalism oppresses and exploits. If you’re not talking about sexism and racism, you’re not talking about economic justice.

    “A few bad apples” can’t exist without a community that condones their attitudes and behaviors. Oppressive language and behavior are an effort to limit our participation and silence our voice.

    We chose to disrupt the GA because those with privilege have avoided spaces devoted to anti-oppression, when they are the ones who most need to hear this.

    As the 99%, we must actively break down the systems which divide us.

    Women have historically been the spine of social justice. We are the 52%, without us, revolution is impossible.

    Contact us

    Occupy Boston Media <> • <> • @Occupy_Boston