Occupying Wall Street and Trying to Be a Good Neighbor

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

As the occupation of Wall Street rolls into another week, protesters say they are doing their best to reduce their impact on the surrounding neighborhood. But sanitation, noise and the extensive police presence remain concerns for some residents according to Community Board 1 chair Julie Menin.

"The other big issue is access," Menin said. "The NYPD has put police barricades really all over the financial district. So we are getting a tremendous number of calls at the Community Board office dealing with access to residential buildings and businesses."
Menin said the Community Board and protesters have meet three times and Occupy Wall Street representatives agreed to stop the protest drumming at 10 p.m. "We have a lot of families with young children who live nearby," Menin said.

But she said trash pick-up and toilet access remain issues.

"We are urging the city to get involved in sanitation issues," Menin said. "The City really doesn't seem to really have any kind of plan to deal with sanitation issues."
Protester Dylan O'Keefe from Massachusetts, with the Occupy Wall Street Sanitation Committee, said members of his committee have been cleaning the toilets of the  restaurants protesters frequent most.
"We really don't want to wear out our welcome," O'Keefe said. "We don't want people who run businesses in the area to dislike us."
When called for comment, a spokesman from the Department of Sanitation said the city had yet to receive a single complaint on the city's 311 line about sanitation conditions at the site.

O'Keefe said  protesters have set up a daily cleaning  protocol. "Right now the biggest challenge is getting everyone to consolidate their things and move them so we can get underneath it and clean. it was a little hard at first to get people to comply but we are doing a pretty good job now," said O'Keefe.
Protesters  regularly collect the  trash generated at the site and take it to spots where the city already picks up garbage on a daily basis. O'Keefe said an outside organization picks up the recyclables generated at the site.

Protester Seth Arbor from Athens, Georgia, had to walk several blocks with two empty ten gallon water jugs. His destination was a restaurant that's been letting protesters get water.

(Photo: Occupy Wall Street sets up a recycling center at their site./Bob Hennelly for WNYC)

"This is a challenge," said Arbor. "We got to make daily runs. This isn't for drinking. It’s to clean the dishes."


More in:

Comments [9]

Kate from Washington Heights

@gretchen - it's not about not investing in stocks. The problem is proper regulation of capitalism. You are hardly expected to put your money under a mattress and be some kind of masochistic purist! Do with your money what you believe is in your best interest AND advocate for proper regulation of markets.

Oct. 12 2011 02:05 PM
mgduke from hell's k

What could be more obvious than that NYC should provide port-a-potties at Zuccotti Park? The costs would be minimal. The benefits to quality of life and public health substantial.

Mayor Bloomberg, mega-savvy mega-entrepreneur, often extols the wisdom of following common sense above rigid adherence to rules. His Administration’s decision to flout common sense--to not protect public health and quality of life by providing toilets at Zuccotti--makes clear that, while he publicly proclaims the right of OWS to demonstrate, he is working behind the scenes to cause problems for the OWS demonstrators, stirring up antagonism against them, in order to undermine freedom of speech that he doesn’t want to hear, even though he knows his tactics are causing harm to the larger population of the city.

Mr Mayor: If you truly support American freedom of speech, or care about public health and quality of life, provide port-a-potties to OWS today.

WNYC: Please question the Administration about doing this.

Oct. 12 2011 11:18 AM

How do I reconcile my interests in some modest investment accounts, such as an IRA and an annuity, with my sympathy with OWS?

Oct. 12 2011 10:47 AM
Zaftig from Bklyn

Occupy Brooklyn is coming...

Oct. 12 2011 10:46 AM
Bonn from East Village

I am in favor of the protest, but I think it needs to be more focused. I remember the old "anarchist" days in the EV, where there was a lot of talk, but no action; i.e., you will only make change thru the political process. What are your "creative solutions"?
Also, please clean up and stop the late night drumming and noise! You are trying the patience of your good neighbors and local businesses.

Oct. 12 2011 10:44 AM
EJ from NJ

I went down to OWS on Monday and my question is where is the fire and fury. From what I know of the movements in the 60's is that people were angry and voiced that anger. I'm not sure if we need more civil conversation. I want to hear screaming and yelling and the frustrated voice of the people. Your guest seems to be too relaxed where is the passion?

Oct. 12 2011 10:42 AM
pilar from brooklyn

I had volunteered a week ago & while in the kitchen area money was being donated. lots of money. How is that being handled to not do what wall street has done.

Oct. 12 2011 10:36 AM
ellen from nyc

i saw on ny1 news 2 interviews with residents near ows who say, although there are some problems for the n hood, they aren't too bad, and they are basically in sympathy with the group's ideas. Later, when ny1 re ran the segment, they cut out the positive statements from one of them--a lady with long blond hair-- and just left in the somewhat negative ones, giving a misleading impression of her views. Did anybody else see this?

Also i was on the millionaire's march on the oes yest and saw some positive feed back from some well to do onlookers there.

Oct. 12 2011 09:45 AM
Nicholas from Manhattan

WNYC has been reporting that Mayor Bloomberg's mansion on the Upper East Side was "spared" a visit by Occupy Wall Street protestors. Maybe Bob Hennelly can prevail upon WNYC to stop using the heavily editorializing word "spared". If Santa Claus misses the house of a deserving youngster, we don't say the boy was spared a visit from Santa.

Oct. 12 2011 07:27 AM

Leave a Comment

Email addresses are required but never displayed.

Get the WNYC Morning Brief in your inbox.
We'll send you our top 5 stories every day, plus breaking news and weather.


Latest Newscast




WNYC is supported by the Charles H. Revson Foundation: Because a great city needs an informed and engaged public


Supported by