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July 01, 2016

City eases ban on rush-hour protests during DNC

Still no plans to close Broad or surrounding Center City streets

The city is reconsidering allowing rush-hour protests during the Democratic National Convention under a lawsuit settlement on Thursday, reports.

It’s already approved some rush-hour protest permits, including that of the anti-poverty activists group Poor People's Economic Human Rights Campaign, which had spurred the lawsuit after being denied a permit to protest down Broad Street during peak hours.

The Pennsylvania chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union filed the lawsuit last week on behalf of the group.

Under the settlement, the Poor People's Economic Human Rights Campaign is now permitted to march from City Hall to the Wells Fargo Center beginning on July 25, the convention's opening day, but with a compromised start time of 2 p.m., rather than 3 p.m., as was originally planned.

The permit allows them to protest through 6 p.m.

The city ban previous prohibited protesting between 7 to 9 a.m. and 3 to 6 p.m.

Mayor Jim Kenney's chief spokeswoman, Lauren Hitt, told reporter Julia Terruso that despite the changes, there's still no plans to close Broad or surrounding Center City streets, though Hitt added short-term closures may come about.

Hitt said part of the reason the city settled is because it felt people might demonstrate despite the ban and a lack of permits, “so better to encourage them to get a permit" to better manage and avoid unnecessary disruptions to area residents and businesses.

According to, the city has received at least 23 requests for demonstration permits and Honkala's was one of at least 10 so far approved.

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