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File #: 200581    Version: 0 Name:
Type: Resolution Status: ADOPTED
File created: 10/22/2020 In control: CITY COUNCIL
On agenda: Final action: 10/29/2020
Title: Affirming all Philadelphians' First Amendment rights to protest and peaceful assembly, particularly in response to the upcoming presidential election.
Sponsors: Councilmember Brooks, Councilmember Domb, Councilmember Gauthier, Councilmember Gilmore Richardson, Councilmember Green, Councilmember Gym, Councilmember Henon, Councilmember Johnson, Councilmember Parker, Councilmember Thomas
Attachments: 1. Resolution No. 20058100, 2. Signature20058100
Title
Affirming all Philadelphians' First Amendment rights to protest and peaceful assembly, particularly in response to the upcoming presidential election.

Body
WHEREAS, The right to join with fellow citizens in protest or peaceful assembly is critical to a functioning democracy and at the core of the First Amendment; and

WHEREAS, Philadelphia has a rich history of citizen protest, stretching from strikes by shoemakers, carpenters, bookbinders, and textile workers in the 1800s, to the first major American protest for LGBTQ equality outside Independence Hall in 1965, to the recent protests in response to the police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor; and

WHEREAS, Philadelphia garnered national attention this summer for the police use of military-style armored vehicles, rubber bullets, pepper spray, and tear gas on protesters and neighborhood residents along 52nd Street in West Philadelphia and the tear gassing of a crowd of demonstrators on I-676 during the unrest in the wake of the police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor; and

WHEREAS, In July, Mayor Kenney waived hundreds of code violation notices (CVNs) issued to protesters between May 30 and June 30, 2020, as recommended by the City Law Department and Office of Administrative Review, in "recognition of the core concerns that caused thousands to demonstrate on the streets of Philadelphia" this summer; and

WHEREAS, The City of Philadelphia has taken many steps to begin to mend the harm caused by the use of chemical weapons and excessive force on protestors during the height of the summer's unrest, including City Council's hearings in the Committee on Public Safety to review the City's response to this summer's protests and Mayor Kenney's establishment of a Reconciliation Steering Committee focused on reconciling long-term goals espoused by disenfranchised communities, addressing criminal justice reform issues, enhancing public safety in all neighborhoods and communities, and mitigati...

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