Update on Occupy London Eviction from Victoria Park

LONDON, ON, Nov. 9, 2011 /CNW/ - The City is pleased and relieved that the occupiers of Victoria Park in London, Ontario peacefully left the park and allowed their tents and belongings to be removed without incident. Speaking at a news conference this morning, London Mayor Joe Fontana and London Police Chief Brad Duncan updated the media on the overnight activities that took place.

The Mayor and the Chief commended the protesters for peacefully leaving the encampment. They also commended police and City staff for their professionalism. The Mayor reiterated the City's real concern for public safety in the park, including the safety of the protesters as well as concerns regarding damage to public property.

"These decisions are never easy and this has never been about denying free speech or free assembly," said Mayor Fontana. "Anyone is free to gather in our parks during the day and evening but we could not and would not permit people to occupy a public park indefinitely. We want to work constructively now with Occupy London on some of the issues that they raised during our Committee of the Whole Meeting and would welcome their continued involvement as we seek to better the lives of Londoners."

"The results speak for themselves," said Police Chief Brad Duncan. "We were able to peacefully remove the structures from the park without any violence or arrests."

The City will begin work immediately to repair damages to the park, as well as take care of seasonal maintenance work including purging the sprinkler system and completing the seasonal light features.

On a go forward basis, no one will be allowed to erect any tent, shelter or other structure. Police will continue to enforce the City's By-law preventing anyone from entering or remaining in Victoria Park between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.  Individuals will be warned of the consequences under the Trespass to Property Act if they continued to engage in prohibited activity.

For more information about the eviction, please see the earlier news release from the London Police Services below:

MEDIA RELEASE

Wednesday, November 9, 2011   

Occupy London Protest Eviction

On Tuesday, November 8, 2011 the London Police Service was provided authorization to act as agents of the City of London for the purposes of administering the Trespass to Property Act, and to take appropriate action, including removing people in contravention of the City of London's by-laws and the Trespass to Property Act.

Also on this date, occupiers of Victoria Park were provided notice of their contravention of the applicable City of London by-laws, which clearly prohibits them from engaging in specific conduct.  They were ordered to immediately abide by these bylaws and were given notice that if by 6:00 p.m. they did not abide by these bylaws that any tents, shelters or other such structures would be removed by, or on behalf of, The Corporation of the City of London.  They were further ordered to cease and desist from entering or remaining in Victoria Park between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. of the following day, or any subsequent day.  Furthermore they were warned of the consequences under the Trespass to Property Act if they continued to engage in prohibited activity.

At 12:40 a.m. on Wednesday, November 9, 2011 the London Police Service attended Victoria Park to enforce these by-laws.  Also in attendance were employees from the City of London to remove any structures that were in violation of the city by-law.  All the structures that were in the park have now been removed.

The London Police Service made no arrests and no occupiers or police officers were injured during this operation.

Dennis Rivest
Constable
Corporate Communications
and Public Relations Officer
London Police Service
601 Dundas Street
London, Ontario
1-519-661-5410
1-519-661-5236 (Fax)
mediaofficer@police.london.ca
http://www.facebook.com/LPS.Ontario
Twitter @ lpsmediaoffice
web page: h href="http://www.police.london.ca/">ttp://www.police.london.ca/

 

SOURCE City of London

For further information:

Media Contact:
Corporate Communications
Tel: 519-661-4792
Email: info@london.ca

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City of London

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