(KCPW News) About 20 tents are now set up on a gravel lot east of the Salt Lake City Main Library, following the city relocating Occupy Salt Lake protesters to Library Square from Gallivan Plaza, where the city moved them from in anticipation of the events happening there this summer. Demonstrator Justin Kramer says they have more space and visibility in their new location.
“This specific spot is much more inviting but people that are down here at the libraryare going to be more willing to have a discussion about these things,” he says. “We’ve sent our message to Chase and Wells Fargo. And the people that were involved with Chase and Wells Fargo that are compassionate and sympathetic to that had already heard our message.”
Occupiers say they are sleeping on the grounds. The city granted the group a free-speech permit to have a 24-hour presence, but they are required to pay for their own portable restrooms and are barred from setting up a kitchen. Kramer says a lot has changed since the camp was forced out of Pioneer Park last fall, but the message has stayed the same.
“I think what’s happened in the last six months is a lot of people have been able to share their grievances and share their frustrations with a less-than-compassionate economic system that has destroyed the American dream. 98 percent of people in the United States will never leave the class they’re born into. 98 percent of American don’t have that social mobility to really enact the American dream as they would like to,” he says.
The Occupy movement has continually criticized corporate influence in politics, staging a demonstration at the State Capitol during the legislative session against the American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC.