Sunday, October 16, 2011

How to Help Occupy Philadelphia

Yesterday we bought a ton of food, cleaning aids, and hygiene products for the folks at Occupy Philadelphia and dropped them off after the march. The Plaza looked really good. Looks like they recovered well from the onslaught of homeless that unexpectedly put added strain on the encampment. Of course, instead of stepping up and taking care of the homeless that descended on City Hall, the city was happy to let the protesters deal with it, which is just business as usual from a city that can give millions in subsidies and tax breaks to businesses but can't open new shelters or maintain properly the ones they have.

Their Facebook page has suggestions for donations that can be brought directly to the northwest side of Dilworth Plaza, City Hall, if the goods are toiletries, camping-type supplies, or ready-to-eat. Food that has to be prepared and kitchen supplies should be taken to the Friends Center on the Cherry Street side. You'll see a gate, and can enter with your goods through there, then up the ramp and to the right.

They are also calling for volunteers to work in the kitchen and at the Plaza when and where people can. And of course, if you can get there and set up a tent for yourself, even if only for a day or two for the solidarity of it, they will welcome you.

But what will happen when the long-planned renovations to the Plaza begin in November? The Christkindlmarkt was set up there in past seasons, but because of the construction this year it will be in Love Park instead. Where will the protesters go then?

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