Two groups are partnering to conduct a “protest with art” demonstration and “sleep out” at the Lucerne Hotel on Saturday, August 29, beginning at 6pm.
The art protest will go from 6-9pm.
Instagram posts shared by both groups state they’ll be “making a welcome banner, painting signs, doing chalk art, and writing letters to representatives in support of temporary hotel shelters, their residents, and service providers on the Upper West Side.”
From 9pm-6am, attendees will “sleep out” in front of the building. The flyer below recommends those attending bring their own sleeping bag.
In reference to the newly formed West Side Community Organization, which has already raised over $110,000, the Instagram posts state how “Certain members of the UWS community are actively trying to relocate shelter residents, who are majority black and brown men, to overcrowded shelters elsewhere in the city, thereby increasing their risk of exposure to the virus and limiting their access to necessary resources. This group of Upper West Siders has raised exorbitant amounts of money to pay legal fees to remove shelter residents, funds which could be better put to use by service providers for unhomed New Yorkers.”
An August 19 press release from the West Side Community Organization states its mission includes better policies for those who are struggling, even though they have been accused of having the sole mission of getting these homeless residents relocated.
Part of this press release states that “WestCo’s mission is to advance safer and more compassionate policies regarding New Yorkers who are struggling with homelessness, mental illness and drug addiction.” It continues by stating that “Funds will be used to create and administer the newly formed organization, which will promote adequate services for those in critical need, help improve the quality of life for residents, and foster a healthy environment for small businesses to thrive.”