Saturday, 17 March 2012

Occupy Wall Street - 6 Month Anniversary

Today is the 6 month anniversary of Occupy Wall Street, and the moment that the movement with roots in similar protests in Spain and Egypt that went on to become the biggest international protest movement in history, was born. 6 months ago the encampment in Zuccotti Park was set up, inspiring thousands of similar camps and demonstrations across the globe calling for financial equality, people (and planet) before profits and an end to the practices of banks, governments and corporations that have led to the current global economic crisis.

Due to this one event, an international dialogue was started on the global economy and already it has impacted on local and national policies within the US and abroad.

As well as being a suitable time to reflect on the past and the achievements and impact of the Occupy Movement, it is also time to look to the future. The global economic crisis is still going on, leading to austerity measures affecting jobs and public services. Corporations are still influencing government policies worldwide. There's much more work to be done.

Occupy Wall Street will be holding a rally in Zuccotti Park today to celebrate the anniversary. Bringing these people back together again may inspire many to take further action. Action on 1st May this year is already being widely discussed, with a General Strike in solidarity with struggles already underway to defend the rights of workers, immigrants, and other communities who are resisting oppression planned. A former employee of Goldman Sachs, a large investment bank on Wall Street has recently left the firm and criticised its' practices in the press, stating “I can honestly say that the environment [at Goldman Sachs] now is as toxic and destructive as I have ever seen it." Occupy Wall Street are now attempting to get him on board.

Since the eviction in November, Occupy Wall Street has not gone away. There have been numerous marches, a re-taking of Zuccotti Park on New Year's Eve and the movement has been working with local communities and actively trying save jobs and homes, as well as working with other organisations and campaigns. The momentum surrounding OWS is on the rise, and a return to the streets could prove to be another peak for the movement.

After 6 months of thousands of people discussing the issues, learning and looking at potential solutions and ways forward, it is possible that we could soon be witnessing a more informed and focussed Occupy Movement in the near future. In the meantime, respect to OWS, and thanks for everything.

More news on Occupy Bath activity coming later in the month. We've been busy.

Previous post on Occupy Wall Street: The Occupy Movement - Occupy Wall Street

Further Reading

6 Ways to Get Ready for the May 1st GENERAL STRIKE (Occupy Wall Street):

Occupy Wall Street protests are ramping up again for spring (Nola):

Occupy in America: looking back on six months of protest (Guardian):

Occupy Wall Street revisited (LFPress):

Denouncing duo? Occupy Wall Street seeking ex-Goldman director for Manhattan march:

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