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Occupy Federal Way puts city council on notice
While small and not very demonstrative, Occupy Federal Way is planning to become a watchdog of the Federal Way City Council, according to Occupy member Libby Bennett.
Bennett took the public comment period at the council’s Jan. 3 meeting to inform elected officials that Occupy Federal Way is here to stay, and will hold the council accountable.
“I am here tonight for many reasons. My concern and love for my community, being number one. It is easy to see all around us, the despair and the toll the economy has taken on our community. Empty buildings that once were home to great local businesses continue to sit empty because no one can afford to bring their trade or treat to us, by way of small business opportunities,” Bennett said. “The inequalities that are now growing within our local community, and those on a broader spectrum, can no longer be dealt with silently. Consider this your notice that we are here.”
Bennett described what Occupy Federal Way hopes to do within the community. The group plans on taking a different tact than the more vocal and publicized Occupy encampments in the state and across the country.
“Occupy Federal Way has decided to take a (different) approach with our occupation, unlike a lot of the occupations around the state or country. We want to educate, embrace and connect the community, shining light on the corporate corruption and greed that has taken over the humanity every community once had. Where we used to have compassion and understanding, we now have anger, misguided information, and the need for things that do nothing but harm the way things should be. We want to light the flame for our community that has been blown out for some time now.”
Bennett concluded: “We are not wanting to become an annoyance within our community, but more of an outlet for real change to become possible.”
Keith Tyler, who gave council member Dini Duclos a surprise run for her money in the recent election, took to the podium to share his thoughts on Occupy and what it means for Federal Way.
“I wanted to just urge everyone to listen to the message and concerns that the Occupy people have,” Tyler said. “Change starts at home. All politics is local. It’s been said many different ways. I think it’s good we have people in Federal Way that want to be local, that want to stand up, that want to get involved and be engaged. I hope everyone, whether you agree with their platforms, statements, visions and goals… that you at least appreciate that they do have an involvement.”
Occupy Federal Way has held several discussion meetings along with a recent “open mic.” To learn more, visit their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/OccupyFederalWay.