Occupy Wall Street protesters are in a standoff with Zuccotti Park owner Brookfield Properties over tomorrow's cleaning, and they spent today busily trying to clean the space themselves. (For the record, the protesters' Sanitation Committee has been cleaning regularly anyway.) Today Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer offered his support for the group: "It is possible to protect first amendment rights to protest as well as the quality of life of Lower Manhattan at the same time. It’s my view that it is wise to have more discussions and meetings and not rush to a 7 a.m. deadline. I call on the City to immediately engage in these important conversations. The best way to resolve this situation is through peaceful and constructive dialogue." And look, this park is so clean the Virgin Mary herself would be proud to come in here and pop a squat:
Stringer also noted that Occupy Wall Street posted a Good Neighbor Policy (read it below), which includes limiting the drum circle to just two hours between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. Community Board 1 chair Julie Menin also said, "Upholding the first amendment right to protest and ensuring that the quality of life of our residents is upheld is imperative. They are not mutually exclusive."
Brookfield Properties says they will start cleaning at 7 a.m. tomorrow and claim the process will take 4 hours for the first section of the park, which will be cleaned in three sections. The NYPD says the protesters will be allowed back, but they will be prohibited from bringing in tarps, sleeping bags, etc.
Following respectful and good-faith dialogue with members of the local community which has been rebuilding since the trauma of 9/11, Occupy Wall Street hereby announces the following Good Neighbor Policy:
OWS has zero tolerance for drugs or alcohol anywhere in Liberty Plaza;
Zero tolerance for violence or verbal abuse towards anyone;
Zero tolerance for abuse of personal or public property.
OWS will limit drumming on the site to 2 hours per day, between the hours of 11am and 5pm only.
OWS encourages all participants to respect health and sanitary regulations, and will direct all participants to respectfully utilize appropriate off-site sanitary facilities.
OWS will display signage and have community relations and security monitors in Liberty Plaza, in order to ensure awareness of and respect for our guidelines and Good Neighbor Policy.
OWS will at all times have a community relations representative on-site, to monitor and respond to community concerns and complaints.
Occupy Wall Street October 13, 2011
Note: In conjunction with local community members and their representatives, OWS is also working to establish off-site sanitary facilities such as port-a-potties.