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For Immediate Release: Nebraska Right to Life Not Alone In Concerns About City of Lincoln's Handling of Occupy Group

For Immediate Release: Nebraska Right to Life Not Alone In Concerns About City of Lincoln's Handling of Occupy Group

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Published by Shelli Dawdy
Grassroots in Nebraska (GiN) Press Release November 28, 2011 Regarding City of Lincoln Handling of the Occupy Lincoln group as compared to other groups and citizens who have conducted First Amendment type events in the City and a statement of support for Nebraska Right to Life's position on the subject, including statements made by Executive Director Julie Schmit-Albin at the November 22, 2011 City Council meeting which was reported on by the Lincoln Journal Star on November 25.
Grassroots in Nebraska (GiN) Press Release November 28, 2011 Regarding City of Lincoln Handling of the Occupy Lincoln group as compared to other groups and citizens who have conducted First Amendment type events in the City and a statement of support for Nebraska Right to Life's position on the subject, including statements made by Executive Director Julie Schmit-Albin at the November 22, 2011 City Council meeting which was reported on by the Lincoln Journal Star on November 25.

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Published by: Shelli Dawdy on Nov 28, 2011
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11/28/2011

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http://grassrootsne.com/?page_id=2405
Sowing the Seeds of Constitutional, Limited Government
F O R I M M E D I A T E R E L E A S E November 28, 2011
NebraskaRightToLifeNotAloneInConcernsAboutCityOfLincoln’sHandlingOfOccupyGroup
InaddressingtheCityCouncilonMonday,November22,Execu<veDirectorofNebraskaRighttoLife,JulieSchmit-Albin,didmorethanraiseques<onsabouthowenforcementofordinancesforsizeandplacementofsignshasaffectedherorganiza<on,saysanotherLincoln-basedgroup.ShelliDawdy,founderofthelimitedgovernmentadvocacygroup,GrassrootsinNebraska(GiN),stated,“We’regratefulthatJulietookthe<meoutofaverybusyholidayweek-<methatGiN’sleadersdidn’thave-topointoutsomeoftheproblemswiththeCity’sordinancesandenforcementofthem.Thereisagrowinglistofques<onsaboutCityofficials’decisionmakingandhowitimpactsci<zens’FirstAmendmentrights,abouttaxpayerliability,aboutpublicsafetyandthefutureoftheruleoflawinLincoln.”Dawdy’sgrouphasbeentroubledsincetheOccupyLincolnencampmentsprangupontheCentennialMallinmid-Octoberandhasbeenac<velymonitoringdevelopmentsbothlocallyandna<onally,whileresearchingLincoln’sMunicipalCodes.GiN’sleadershipteamhasno<cedsomedifferencesintheCity’shandlingofgroupslikeGiN,NebraskaRighttoLife,andothers,whencontrastedagainstthehandlingoftheOccupyLincolngroup.Astaxpayers,membersofGiNareincreasinglyconcernedabouttheCity’spoten<alexposuretocostlylegalac<onresul<ngfromsuchdisparateapplica<onofthelawaffec<ngci<zens’abilitytoexercisetheirFirstAmendmentrights.CityofficialsstatedinOctoberthattheMallisnotaCityPark,buta“publicright-of-way”,despitealonghistoryofmanagementbytheParksandRecrea<onDepartmentwhichincludesbudge<ng,maintenance,long-rangeplanning,andpublica<oninprintandtheCity’swebsitethattheMallisapark.ParksandRecrea<onhasrequiredgroupstofollowpermiXnganduseordinancesforparkswhenconveningeventsontheMallinthepast.OccupyLincoln’sencampmentviolatesalistofCityordinancesunderanyclassifica<onoftheMall,especiallysinceindefiniteovernightcampingisinvolved.TheCity’spastenforcementofpermitrequirementsforFirstAmendmentrelatedevents,includingmarchesandstreetclosures,arenowduerenewedscru<ny.“Thereseemstobenoobjec<vestandardforhowgroupsaretreated,”Dawdynoted,“Somegroupsaregrantedonekindofpermit,whileothergroupsarerequiredtogetanotherkindofpermitinthesamespaceforthesamekindofevent.S<llothers,includingOccupyLincoln,arenotrequiredtogetapermitatall.Wecan’tfindawaytomakesenseofCitypolicyassociatedwithFirstAmendmentexpression,includingthoseregardingsignage.Cityofficials’statementsaboutcampingonCentennialMall,whateverofficialswanttonowcallthatloca<on,makestheleastsenseofanyaspectofthisissue.”Followingthepublica<onofanar<cleintheFriday,November25,
LincolnJournalStar 
aboutSchmit-Albin’sNovember22appearancebeforetheCityCouncil,GiN’sleadershipteamdecidedtoletotherLincolnitesandSchmit-Albin’scri<csknowthatanall-volunteer,unincorporatedgroupwithabroadmissionhasmanyconcernsaboutLincolnofficials’handlingofthema\er.AsofSundayevening,themajorityofcommentson
 JournalStar’s
webversionofthear<cleweredismissive,personala\acksonSchmit-Albin,includingherstatusasapaidemployee,herpro-lifeadvocacy,andevenonherfamilylife,notonanyofthesubstan<veissuesaboutunequalapplica<onoflaworencroachmentonFirstAmendmentrights.DawdyandSchmit-Albinhavebothseparatelystatedthattheysupportallci<zens’abilitytoexercisetheirFirstAmendmentrightstofreespeechandassembly,butbothhavestatedthattheybelieveci<zens-includingOccupyLincoln-shoulddosowithintheconfinesofthelaw.
###
GRASSROOTS in NEBRASKA 
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