Protestors at the Women’s March on Washington will no longer be allowed to gather at the Lincoln Memorial after the National Park Service (NPS), on behalf of the Presidential Inauguration committee, filed a “massive omnibus blocking permit” for the memorial and a number of Washington D.C.’s most famous political locations.
Mike Litterst, a spokesman for the NPS, has said that the restriction is a practical one, due to the time it will take to clear up bleachers and viewing stands for the inauguration. But according to Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, executive director of the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund, restricting protesters’ access to public land after an inauguration is “extremely unique.”
“It hasn’t come up in any way previously, where you’ve had a groundswell of people trying to have access on the Saturday, January 21, and thousands of people want to come, and the government is saying we won’t give you a permit,” said Verheyden-Hilliard. “What they’ve done is take all of these spaces out of action.”
Cassady Fendlay, a spokeswoman for the Women’s March, said that the organization had “secured another location” for the march in light of the news. At least 138,000 people on the Women’s March on Washington Facebook page have said that they plan on attending the protest, and a further 228,000 have expressed an interest in attending.
Read the full story at The Guardian.