Things get cloudy for #occupyvictoria

I’m not sure what changed, my understanding of the #occupyvictoria movement in centennial square (beside city hall) is that the protestors would be left alone. I’m not sure what triggered the changes, but a couple hours ago the reports on twitter started of police harassing and arresting people. Apparently water and power was cut off from the protestors, and police were asking them to shut down their make shift kitchen. All of this is happening as it pours rain here in the downtown core of Victoria.

As I’m reading this, I was just sent a link that David Arthur Johnston was just sentenced to 60 days in jail where he promises a hunger strike that is likely to kill him. My understanding is that Mayor Dean Fortin had agreed to have the protesting tenters left alone. The difference is that David wasn’t there to protest, he’s homeless. At least on the surface, this seems quite hypocritical. Apparently there is an #occupyvictoria general assembly at 7pm, it’ll be interesting to hear how all of this unfolds.

I will update this story as I hear more. You can contact me on twitter as @cqwww. You can follow the latest tweets using the #occupyvictoria hashtag.

Update 5:28pm PST:

  • Paul let me know the kitchen has not been shut down.
  • Victoria Police Department confirms there have been no arrests there today, and that the kitchen has been left alone.
Update: 11:21pm PST:
  • Water was cut off from the city of Victoria today. Campers were notified about this almost two weeks ago. The reason the city provided is that the water might freeze in the garden hoses.
  • Power was cut off today, but this was not from the city of Victoria; the campers had effectively been stealing power from the CRD building.
  • I went on site, and was finally told that there was after all no recorded incident around the kitchen, or any known arrests today. A lot of fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD) coming out of the camp, unfortunately.
The only question that remains, why are police not enforcing the tent rules for protestors, but arresting the homeless, and how are they differentiating?

 

2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Cheryl DeWolfe on November 3, 2011 at 7:09 am

    Thanks for the added update; the CTV story clarified the City vs. CRD power issue but the rest was news to me. I would not be surprised that the dividing line between protesters and homeless campers is as simple as having proof of a permanent address.

    Reply

  2. [...] and that VicPD was shutting their kitchen down. I took all of this and quickly posted it onto the 250life blog, knowing this would likely be another case where I’d break the news before any other [...]

    Reply

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