The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Christopher Ott, ACLU of Massachusetts Communications Director, 617-482-3170
Urszula Masny-Latos, Executive Director, National Lawyers Guild,
Massachusetts Chapter, 617-227-7335
Howard Cooper, Todd & Weld LLP, 617-720-2626

ACLU, National Lawyers Guild Call for Restraint Against Occupy Boston


In response to Mayor Menino's announcement this morning that Occupy Boston protestors must leave their Dewey Square encampment by midnight tonight or the city will take "further action", the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts and the National Lawyers Guild-Massachusetts issued the following statement:

"Across the country, even people who have not been sympathetic to the Occupy movement have been shocked by images of the force used against peaceful protestors, including beatings, and the use of pepper spray.

Mayor Menino's announcement today has ensured nationwide attention for whatever happens next in Boston. We call on the City to show restraint and not repeat the mistakes made by carrying out heavy-handed crackdowns. If the City feels it must act, it at least has the responsibility to ensure a peaceful transition. Midnight deadlines and actions taken suddenly or under cover of darkness are rash and unhelpful.

Boston, as part of the long New England tradition of town meeting and grassroots democracy, has an important role to play again in how it responds to Occupy Boston. We believe that Boston can--and must--set an example for the entire nation in protecting the rights of Occupy Boston participants, and the many other concerned citizens they represent."

The ACLU of Massachusetts and National Lawyers Guild-Massachusetts Chapter, through attorney Howard Cooper of Todd & Weld, have sought to protect the rights of Occupy Boston protestors.

The American Civil Liberties Union was founded in 1920 and is our nation's guardian of liberty. The ACLU works in the courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to all people in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States.

(212) 549-2666