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After arrests at Tallahassee City Hall last week, Leon County gives OccupyTally a permit

A woman at a podium and microphone with American flags and a sign saying "Occupy Tally"
Courtesy of OccupyTally
Courtesy of OccupyTally
OccupyTally protests in front of Tallahassee City Hall

The Leon County Courthouse will host a group of protesters who were arrested at Tallahassee City Hall last week. The group had been advocating for abortion access after a proposed six-week ban passed in the Florida Senate.

The group is called OccupyTally, and there is controversy about their arrests at City Hall. But now the county will allow them to re-establish their base across the street from the state capital. Leon County spokesman Matt Cavell confirmed that OccupyTally will be able to use the courthouse from Monday morning through Friday afternoon.

The group’s spokeswoman, Beth Weinstein, says they’re also working to get the city charges dropped.

“In the interim, we are very thankful that we have a legally permitted event, which is what we wanted all along," Weinstein said, "so that we can provide a safe, secure space for communities and citizens of Florida to come together and lift up their voices…”     

Last week’s arrests came after officers warned protesters several times that anyone who remained in the area around city hall after sundown would be trespassing. The protest had initially been planned for Kleman Plaza, but the city moved the group’s permit to City Hall before revoking it altogether. In a statement, the city said that decision was made after learning the group hoped to camp out overnight.

The city did not immediately respond over the holiday weekend.

Occupy Tally is hosting an event at the courthouse on Wednesday. Weinstein says it will include Senate minority leader Lauren Book and Florida Democratic Party chairwoman Nikki Fried, who were arrested at City Hall with the group last week. Tallahassee City Commissioner Jack Porter will also participate.

Follow @MargieMenzel

Margie Menzel covers local and state government for WFSU News. She has also worked at the News Service of Florida and Gannett News Service. She earned her B.A. in history at Vanderbilt University and her M.S. in journalism at Florida A&M University.