Monday, June 13, 2011

Food Not Bombs - Public Service Announcement



June 12, 2011


Food Not Bombs
Keith McHenry - cofounder

Orlando Food Not Bombs
Benjamin Markeson


Orlando Food Not Bombs also announces several events including A Day WIthout Food on Wednesday, June 29, 2011 and the Black Out Arrests Speak Out at City Hall on Monday, June 27, 2011.

More arrests possible during the June 13th Breakfast at Lake Eola Park. The meal starts at 9:30 AM and everyone is welcome. After the arrests everyone is invited to march to City Hall to deliver the group's letter to Mayor Buddy Dyer requesting a meeting. Copies of the letter adopted at the June 10th Food Not Bombs meeting will be provided to the media outside city hall.

The Orlando police may arrest more volunteers at Lake Eola Park for sharing breakfast with more then 24 people. Support from all over the world is still pouring in. A group of friends emailed to say they would be driving down from Georgia to share food at Lake Eola Park on July 4th. The on-line petition started in Japan passed 1,000 signatures yesterday. People are making Youtube videos and sending them around the internet. A second online petition was started yesterday.

Local support is also building. A group of local home owners came out from their condominiums to express their support at Wednesday's dinner. Members of the Orlando Police, jailers and inmates have all told us that they think Buddy Dyer is wrong to arrest us. Everyone from the unions, churches, punk bands, and grocery store clerks to the guy at the copy shop and a woman waiting for her husband near Winn Dixie have offered help. Suggestions of every kind are being emailed or called in. The Detroit Underground gave out 150 sandwiches in solidarity and many other people have organized events in their cities in support.

I walked through the Parramore district of Orlando this afternoon talking with families on their porches and the community living under the 408 bridge. Parramore is on "the other side of the tracks" where many homes and business are owned by the African American community and the area of town where Mayor Buddy Dyer and his business associates intend to move their "homeless problem." Everyone I meet in Parramore was friendly, welcoming and once they realized I was with Food Not Bombs I was greeted with enthusiasm. A man that introduced himself as Tyler or "The Professor" called over to me as I left my van eager to talk with me. He told me he had been living on the streets of Orlando for years. He knew the important dates in the history Orlando Food Not Bombs from the early meals to the day when Eric was arrested to the announcement that we had lost the case in Atlanta. His friend took a photo of both of us with his cell phone. The staff at the Orlando Union Rescue Mission helped out giving flyers announcing our meals to everyone staying for the evening. The message we are hearing from Russia and Italy to Parramore was don't give up, keep on sharing food, we are behind you all the way.

And we wont give up!



MONDAY, JUNE 13TH at 9:30 AM Risking arrest sharing breakfast at Lake Eola Park, corner of Central and Osceola, Orlando
Presentation of the letter requesting a meeting with Mayor Buddy Dyer.

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 15h at 5:30 PM - Risking arrest sharing dinner at Lake Eola Park, corner of Central and Osceola, Orlando

MONDAY, JUNE 20th at 9:30 AM Risking arrest sharing breakfast at Lake Eola Park, corner of Central and Osceola, Orlando

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 22nd at 5:30 PM - Risking arrest sharing dinner at Lake Eola Park, corner of Central and Osceola, Orlando

MONDAY, JUNE 27th Breakfast at 9:30 AM and Black Out Arrests Speak Out at City Hall in the Council Chambers at 2:00 PM - 2nd floor, 400 S. Orange Ave. Wear black and come to speak at the city council meeting to ask for an end to the arrests.

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 29th at 5:30 PM - A Day Without Food at Lake Eola Park, corner of Central and Osceola, Orlando

FRIDAY, JULY 1st at NOON - Free meal, cultural events and over night vigil outside Orlando City Hall

Join our fast, join us at Lake Eola Park and call Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer at 407.246.2221

Nearly 1 billion people face a day without food every day. Over 25,000 die each day from hunger. Hunger is not limited to less developed countries, with over 15 percent of Americans going with out food each month. Federal authorities report that 387,849 new recipients were added to the food stamps program in March 2011. Over 44 million Americans rely on food stamps to feed their families. Second Harvest in Orlando reported that over 55,000 people required food through their central Florida program. They also reported that 20.7% of the pantries, 10.1% of the kitchens and 33.0% of the shelters responded that they turned away clients during the past year. Their website also shows that 49% of the Central Florida Second Harvest clients had to choose between paying for food and paying for their rent or mortgage. These staggering and painful statistics reflect the failure of priorities. No one should hungry in the world's wealthiest country.

The City of Orlando started arresting people for sharing meals with the hungry on June 1, 2011. The city had arrested 12 volunteers by June 8th. The 11th Circuit Court ruled that the city could restrict Food Not Bombs to sharing only twice a year per park. The law is not limited to Orlando. Cities like Gainesville, Fort Lauderdale, Saint Petersburg, and other Florida cities are also introducing laws restricting the sharing of food with the hungry. We encourage you to participate in these three actions in Orlando. If we defend the right to share food in protest to war and poverty in Orlando other cities will withdraw their anti-feeding laws.

(This campaign and letter to the mayor adopted at the Orlando Food Not Bombs meeting June 10, 2011)


Human Needs Not Corporate Greed vigil July 1, 2011 at your local city hall!

I'm Going to Disney World…to get arrested sharing food with the hungry

Orlando Food Not Bombs

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