Piccadilly Gardens, Manchester
The planned protest for the 23rd of May in Piccadilly Gardens, Manchester has been organised in response to the callous cuts which have taken place over the past five years of government, and are planned to continue over the next five years. These austerity measures are not unique to one party, and it seems that there is no way out for society’s most vulnerable. That is why we have decided to take action.
The action is a collaboration between organisers Mike Atkinson and Liam Callacher, two local citizens, now with official backing from The People’s Assembly. We intend this to be an entirely peaceful affair. We believe this is a necessity for our main goal: engagement, communication, and collaboration. We want to discuss with the people of Manchester who might never consider even approaching a protest like this how austerity measures affects us all, those they love, their communities and the communities close to them. We want to share how these cuts are completely unnecessary (and downright cruel), and to engage with communities and bring them together in order to form ways to combat austerity. We do not just want to stand on a podium and talk. We want to listen. We want to learn.
No longer can we get on our hands and knees and beg the establishment for pittance. We as communities, we as people, must act together to combat these measures, measures which may not directly affect us but will affect people around us: vulnerable people with no chance of fighting back on their own. We want to provide a way that people and communities can work together to mobilise and help one another.
We will have a diverse array of speakers at our event discussing these matters and we hope that fostering such a mutual understanding will be beneficial to the next five years of community mobilisation. We're not just looking to take a stand, we're looking to be pragmatic and to help those who need it, and we invite all of you to engage in discussion. If we invite communities together, we open the floodgates for ideas.
One immediate measure we are taking on the day is to make provisions for Manchester's growing homeless population. Therefore, we invite all involved to bring as many items as they can, or to make donations to the cause. We are not only looking for food, but also health products such as sanitary towels. Any help you can give on the day will be most appreciated.
We want the protest in Piccadilly Gardens to be an event people feel they can safely approach. We will have a diverse array of speakers, live music and fun. We invite everyone to join us to take a stand, to engage in discussion, to bring provisions for the homeless and the needy, and to have a good time in the face of imposed misery.
1. Everybody is welcome and, as such, we should make this a safe space for and accommodate the needs of everybody, regardless of ability, religion, ethnicity – indeed, minorities of all kinds should be able to have their voices heard loud and clear at this protest.
2. This is a peaceful protest, integral to our goal of communication and mobilisation. Anybody who does not respect the nature of the protest will have to splinter off and do their own thing, and are not the responsibility of the event organisers or The People's Assembly.
3. We would appreciate it if parties would refrain from selling newspapers and setting up stalls within the confines of the protest. We want this to remain a party-neutral protest and would request that such activities are done outside the main event. However, because we cannot legally stop you, if you really must set up a stall, please do so at the back of the area, to allow for the conception of some sort of 'bordering' of the area, and also to allow for the crowds to see the 'podium' uninterrupted. The stewards will direct you to a designated area on the day should you desperately wish to do this. Thank-you.