#OccupyDemocracy Ends Occupation, Agrees to Re-occupy Parliament Sq in November & Present demands to MPs at 2pm today
Occupation ends peacefully
The nine-day pro-democracy occupation in Parliament Square ended peacefully last night with a joyful closing ceremoy as the organisers intended. The occupation was organised to draw attention to our democratic crisis and the need for urgent, radical reform so that democracy starts working for the 99%.
For a number of strategic reasons it was decided to carry out a time-limited occupation. Strict implementation of new restrictions on the right to protest saw occupiers who resolved to maintain a constant presence in the Square including overnight in the cold and the rain were denied anything that might enable a relatively warm, comfortable night’s sleep – including sleeping bags, cardboard and umbrellas.
Lobby of MPs today at 2pm
At 2pm today (Monday 24 October) #occupydemocracy called for supporters of democratic reform to join them, as they plan to go into Parliament to lobby and lay out their provisional demands, as agreed last night during the final General Assembly of the occupation at which around 100 occupiers were present.
Occupier George Barda said:
“This action is largely symbolic since we know that – barring a few honourable exceptions – MPs make decisions on behalf of vested interests. There is an alternative but it will only happen when people realise their power and come together to push for change.”
Demands agreed which put people, planet and democracy itself ahead of profit
Provisional demands under three headings – People Before Profit, Environment Before Profit and Democracy Before Profit – were agreed. These included proposals to reform democracy so that it works for the 99% rather than corporations, banks and a tiny wealthy elite, such as:
- Hold a citizen-led Constitutional Convention for real democracy
- Reform the media to allow a more diverse and representative range of voices
- Bring in proportional representation so that everyone’s vote counts
- End the “revolving door” and secondement betweeen corporations and government
- MPs barred from holding second jobs
If democracy was sufficiently reformed, we believe that popular policies such as the following would be implemented that put People and the Environment before Profit :
- End privatisation of the NHS
- Abolish Tuition Fees
- Close down Tax Havens
- Terminate discussion on secret and undemocratic trade deals (TTIP CETA & TISA)
- Living Wage for All
- Ban Fracking & Invest in Renewable Energy
- Implement a Green New Deal to create One Million Climate Jobs
Plans afoot to re-occupy Parliament Square over a weekend in November
Protesters also agreed to re-occupy Parliament Square over a weekend in November in order to build their campaign for real democracy. The date of this occupation will be announced in due course.
Occupiers to support the launch of the Energy Bill of Rights
Occupiers will support the launch event for Fuel Poverty Action’s Energy Bill of Rights today at 4.45pm in Parliament. The Energy Bill of Rights Is designed to give people inspiration and confidence to stand up against the rip-off Big Six energy companies who are leaving us to freeze and to join the movement for a clean, affordable and renewable energy system owned by us. As millions of people worry about how they will heat their homes this winter, the Energy Bill of Rights will support people to take action together to demand their rights .
New Putney Debates talks series starts tonight with Owen Jones
Occupy London continues to raise issues of national importance as it embarks on a series of talks this evening with speakers including Owen Jones (The Guardian), Professor Victoria Chick (UCL economist) and Izabella Kaminska (FT Alphaville). Full details can be found here: http://thenewputneydebates.com
1. In 2012/2013 over 10,000 people died of fuel poverty. Millions more of us struggled to pay our bills, top up our prepayment meters, and were bullied by our energy companies because we owed them money we couldn’t pay. For many people meant going without heating or hot water during the winter, or it meant having our homes entered, without permission, by energy companies to install prepayment meters. More information about the launch can be found here: http://www.fuelpovertyaction.org.uk/uncategorized/launching-the-energy-bill-of-rights/