Friday, October 17, 2014
Campers Surprise Broward 100 Block Party
Thursday, October 16th was the day of enforcement for the camping ban, which will allow the FLPD to arrest people in downtown essentially for being homeless and having no place to go. Ironically it was also the day of the "Broward 100" block party on Las Olas. An evening of speakers, musical entertainment and "street performers" was planned to celebrate 100 years since the creation of Broward County.
However, there seemed to be a bit of confusion on the stage after the Chinese Dragon performance - that was because homeless advocates from Food Not Bombs decided to stage an impromptu performance to protest the beginning of the camping ban. After issuing a brief statement participants camped out with sleeping bags and cardboard mats that doubled as protest signs against Fort Lauderdale's Homeless Hate Laws.
Far from a hostile treatment, the crowd seemed very receptive to this demonstration and ignored the stage MC's requests to turn back to the regularly scheduled program. Afterwards the demonstrators were allowed to leave without incident.
Around the same time, these banners also appeared on the parking garage just north of Las Olas Boulevard across from Stranahan Park, and stayed up for most of the night.
While homeless harassment downtown has indeed been bad lately, as of the time of this writing we have not heard of anyone being arrested under the camping ban law. We have more video and photos to share but we are also frantically preparing for the Resist Homeless Hate Laws Forum this Saturday! You may also find some photos submitted from the public at #broward100