During the Portland Peaceful Response march on Friday the 11th, Todd of the Portland Peace Camp, spotted Cmdr. Rosie Sizer among the officers present. He approached her and struck up a conversation concerning police-peace camp relations. Todd was shortly joined by Andy Seaton of Peace Camp.
Cmdr Sizer stated that per legal advice from City Attorneys, Peace Camp would no longer be charged Public Camping, but will be charged with violating the Obstructions as Nuisance ordinance. She agreed that Peace Camp is not obstructing the flow of traffic on the sidewalk, but that the ordinance also covers other material on the sidewalk. She noted that the Obstruction ordinance does not require 24 hour notice, preventing Peace Camp from staging a "Press Conference" as it did today. Cmdr Sizer further stated that no action would be taken during the evening of April 11th, but would make no assurances about Saturday the 12th.
Apon reading the Obstructions as Nuisance ordinance (14A.50.030), available on the City web site, the City's interpretation is extremely broad and could cover any item on the sidewalk from newspaper boxes to pigeons.
It is clear that the City is looking for any excuse to get rid of Peace Camp, especially after the media circus this afternoon. Peace Camp has stated that they are committed to staying thru the Alliance March on Saturday April 12th, but will then review its options for continuing after that.
Copyright © 2003 by Andrew Hunter Seaton. This material may be distributed only subject to the terms and conditions set forth in the Open Publication License, v1.0 or later (the latest version is presently available at http://www.opencontent.org/openpub/). Distribution of substantively modified versions of this document is prohibited without the explicit permission of the copyright holder.