Occupy New Orleans was founded on October 6th, 2011 upon the end of our first march. The local media estimated approximately 400 people were there. This probably means that more were there, and also be aware that this number includes police officers both local and federal. The encampment at Duncan Plaza, later re-named Avery Alexander, started out pretty huge. Tents were erected, meetings were held, actions occurred and conflict as well. Many left, while many continue to support or participate for the first time with ONOLA. Others continue to re-join. Occupy New Orleans continues to be a growing organism.
However, let us remember our inspirations like Egypt and Occupy Wall Street. The shoulder-to-shoulder switch we saw in Egypt spurred others. OWS, Tunisia, Bolivia, Iceland, UK, US and others are changing or have changed at high rates of velocity. Many individuals, in New Orleans alone, have been protesting for years before the Occupy Movement even began. This means that Occupy NOLA is only a branch on a much larger tree. Let us not demean our accomplishments, though. For starters, we were the first to win an occupy-related court battle. We held onto the park for approximately 8 months, after numerous wins and losses. They didn’t like us for many reasons, but one reason is obvious. This may have been due to the fact that we landed right in their front yard, across the street from City Hall.
Other accomplishments include: DOZENS of protests, marches, meetings, general assemblies, concerts, viewings, lectures, teach-ins and more. Not to mention the numerous trips that Occupy the Stage took in Solidarity with the movement. Data has been collected, for instance, from numerous Occupations across the U.S. and includes lessons, methodologies and more. Don’t forget Chalkupy and the 99% Unwelcome for Jindal and Walker returning to New Orleans. We’ve done a lot, yet this is only the beginning!