UPDATE: Seattle sues SCCC to Protect Round-the-Clock Presence and Free Speech Activities
–UPDATE 11/23 3:07PM–
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
HEADLINE: Occupy Seattle sues SCCC to protect round-the-clock presence and free speech activities
BYLINE: Olympia, Washington, November 23, 2011
STORY: Occupy Seattle has sued Seattle Central Community College in Thurston County Superior Court to prevent the college from evicting Occupy Seattle from the college’s campus. The suit challenges the validity of an “emergency rule” that would ban the presence of tents and other structures at the site based on concerns about health and safety. The suit claims that health and safety concerns identified in two King County Department of Health reports, including the presence of “uncontrolled dog food in uncovered bowls,” can be addressed through existing rules and enforcement by relevant agencies. The suit claims that enacting a broad “emergency rule” against tents is an “arbitrary and capricious” action, which is a violation of the college’s legal obligations. A hearing on the case is scheduled for today at 2:00 p.m.
Occupy Seattle is the local branch of an international movement, launched September 17, 2011 by Occupy Wall Street in New York City. The movement is generally unified around the need for economic justice and eliminating corporate control of the political system, protestors reflect a wide array of political and social concerns. Other occupations around the country, including Portland and New York City, have recently been evicted from their full-time sites, possibly ending the movement in those cities. Occupy Seattle representatives argue that a round-the clock political assembly is the signature feature of this movement, and its main vehicle for free speech.
–UPDATE 11/23 2:15PM–
One Occupier’s Observations of the Meeting:
As I understood it, Monday the administration will file the paperwork in Olympia to place a temporary ban on camping for the next 120 days while they pursue a more permanent change. So I assume Monday once the filing has gone through. However, the administration did make statements to the effect that they hope to work with organizers to provide for an orderly transition. Presumably this would occur during a yet as undetermined grace period.
For many in the administration, the “tipping point” seemed to be the attempted sexual assault that occurred over the weekend. There was also a fairly consistent lack of student support. Several spoke out against the occupation to express personal experiences having to do with safety. Mostly centering around various forms of repeated harassment, inconvenience, and a general sense of educational disenfranchisement as a result. The student body president appeared to try and straddle the line, both speaking out in support of the goals and intentions of Occupy Seattle, but ultimately against its practical reality.
I should probably also add that there were several moments of poignant high drama & tension. Including several disruptions and a truly bizarre moment wherein the Chairperson cut off one of the few faculty members of the board speaking out in favor of Occupy Seattle before then asking the faculty member to apologize for the chairperson having had to interrupt her.
–UPDATE 11/23 1:24PM–
More information on Occupy Seattle Camp Ban Here:
–UPDATED 11/23 1:16pm–
Tweets Taken from jseattle:
Trustees unanimously pass emergency rule #occupyseattle
20 minutes ago »
If emergency rule passes won’t be filed in Olympia until next week #occupyseattle
24 minutes ago »
President Killpatrick: Fridays attempted rape was last straw #occupyseattle
36 minutes ago »
I hope q13 is reporting on this #occupyseattle http://twitpic.com/7iilof
38 minutes ago »
Moment of poetry here. All media being pushed aside so trustees can screen a q13 report on sex assault #occupyseattle
40 minutes ago »
Occupier: set a date to close the camp so we can take the steps together #occupyseattle
48 minutes ago »
“We could pay for and address these concerns. Not going to back down without a fight” #occupyseattle
53 minutes ago »
American Federation of Teachers rep: #occupyseattle figuring out how to best make their impact
–ORIGINAL POST 11/23 10:55AM–
Jill Wakefield requested a special meeting for noon today (11/23) so the district’s board of trustees can vote on an emergency proposal to ban camping on college property. The ban, which would take effect immediately, is aimed solely at Occupy Seattle’s camp at the Seattle Central Community College on Capitol Hill.
Special Board Meeting Notification
Please be informed that a special Board of Trustees meeting is scheduled to be held on November 23, 2011, at 12 noon in the Seattle Community College District Office Boardroom, 1500 Harvard Avenue, Seattle, WA 98122.
CALL TO ORDER
INTRODUCTION OF VISITORS (please sign in)
APPROVAL OF AGENDA / ACTION
Fifteen minutes are regularly set aside for others to express their views on any matter except those restricted to Executive Session. Anyone wishing to speak to the items on this meeting Agenda will be recognized when the item is being discussed.
RECOMMENDED BOARD ACTION
Proposed Emergency Rule on Camping
More info on Board of Trustees Meeting: