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NYCLU And CCR Sue City To Secure Central Park Permit For UFPJ Demonstration

The New York Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional Rights today announced they have filed a lawsuit on behalf of United for Peace and Justice to secure a permit for a protest rally in Central Park on August 29th. The suit follows months of protracted negotiations and an unacceptable solution for a rally to accommodate an estimated 250,000 protesters on the eve of the Republican National Convention.

“This lawsuit is about protecting the First Amendment rights of individuals who are an integral part of the political process,” said Donna Lieberman, Executive Director of the NYCLU. “The park belongs to everyone and it is unconstitutional to restrict its use for peaceful, political protest. We believe that in rejecting the UFPJ’s request for a permit to rally on the Great Lawn, the city is directly denying the group’s right to freedom of speech.”

The lawsuit, which was filed in New York’s State Supreme Court, seeks a court order mandating the city to issue a permit for United for Peace and Justice to hold a rally in Central Park on Sunday August 29.

UFPJ filed its request to rally on the Great Lawn over a year ago and the city denied the parks permit late this spring. At the time, the City Parks Department indicated it was concerned about the impact of the rally on the recently restored grass. Since then, the mayor has indicated his concerns had to do with security.

Click here to read the complaint.

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