Occupy Farm continuing to trespass on Gill Tract, despite earlier statement (updated)

Occupy signs at the Gill Tract. Credit Carol Carlisle

Occupiers were given till 10 am today to get out or risk arrest.

See details here.

At 9 am this morning, after meeting, they agreed to take down their tents and leave, thereby meeting the University’s deadline and avoiding criminal charges.

The University had agreed to give them a seat at the table of a meeting discussing the future of the tract of land if they agreed to leave.

While Occupiers agreed to leave, they said they would not be taking part in the meeting.

“We are saying we don’t need the encampment, but we are also saying that we don’t need the UC” said “Christof,” who spoke to KTVU on behalf of the Occupy the Farm protesters Saturday morning.

Updated: Gopal Dayaneni, Occupy spokesperson, released the following statement which makes it appear that they are not in fact leaving-that they are simply removing the tents, but they are still trying to farm there and control the site- “We are not ceding control or supervision”:

We are removing the encampments. We don’t need the encampment to assert the right and responsibility to tend the crops. We don’t need to camp here …. We’re leaving all the things that are appropriate to farming.

We’ve been discussing it over the last day or so. We made that decision this morning. We’re now executing it.

We’re still doing our events today. We’re creating access points. We’re building a slide for kids to get in(emphasis added). We continue to assert the fact that we did on Day One: that the fence is not the issue.

People have invested, and they have the right to continue to farm here. We feel like we have a lot of support for the farm. The camp was a tactic to serve the farm. At this time we don’t think we need it. So we’re moving it. If we decide we need it in the future, we will bring it back.

The most important thing is that people have access to the crops, and that people can come and go.

We’re not ceding control or supervision. We’re continuing to farm the farm. We’re continuing to ask everyone to come and join us. We’ve committed to the researchers that we can coexist…. We created the space necessary for researchers to farm their crops.

The university is really the barrier here. They should keep the gates open and let people come and go.

So long as we’re under threat by lawsuit and arrest, we’re not willing to trust them with our crops.

Updated: 5/12 5:10 pm While the occupiers staying on the property appear to have jumped the fence to leave, they claim they will continue to breach the property to care for their crops. They have set up ladders to be able to access the property. Because they have vowed to continue to trespass, the University says they will not drop the lawsuit against them.

Slide Dayaneni talked about building for “kids to get in”. Despite being illegally there and at risk of arrest, Occupy has encouraged neighborhood kids to enter. Credit Alyssa

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