This is a sneak peak of a collaboration between the Community Relations Working Group and The Street Vendor Project, a union of street cart operators in NYC. Monday will be the official press release.
In the wake of the NYPD's escalating harrassment of street cart vendors, Occupy Wall Street (OWS) and the Street Vendor Project have teamed up to create an online donation platform
for street vendors who call Liberty Square (aka Zuccotti Park) their home. Through the website, supporters across the country - and around the world - can view vendor profiles and purchase food to be donated to the People's Kitchen at OWS.
New York City street vendors, as small business entrepenours, represent a diverse cross-section of the 99%. Through this platform, vendors will be able to participate in the growing excitement of the OWS movement and contribute to sustaining it.
"City street vendors are no strangers to police harrassment and excessive fines," said Sean Bazinski of the Street Vendor Project, which advocates for the city's 10,000 vendors. "Yesterday's abrupt seizure is just one example of the all-too-common trend of police hampering the ability of vendors to pursue their own livelihood and make an honest living."
"The police are giving me lots of trouble since OWS started. I can't park my van for even 5 or 10 minutes. I've already gotten 5 tickets. All the vendors are trying to make a living and we are struggling," said Shafiqul Islam, one of the participating vendors at Zuccotti Park.
The Street Vendor Project (http://streetvendor.org/), part of the non-profit Urban Justice Center, organizes and represents the thousands of people that sell food and merchandise on our city's streets and sidewalks.
Occupy Wall Street is a protest encampment entering its 6th week in Liberty Square - formerly Zuccotti Park - in Lower Manhattan. It has grown to a nationwide movement of hundreds of occupations and General Assemblies in cities across the country.