Activists invaded Community Board 1’s office on Monday, using Occupy Wall Street tactics to protest the city’s eviction of the Morning Glory Community Garden at Southern Boulevard and Union Avenue.
They demanded to speak to District Manager Cedric Loftin, and when they were told he wasn’t there refused to leave. Instead, they recited their grievances and telephoned board members, producing the video that accompanies this story as the office receptionist Annie Rojas ordered them to stop.
The demonstrators, who have been active in Occupy the Bronx, say the community board has failed to listen to them. It took the part of the city’s Dept. of Housing Preservation and Development, which destroyed the garden, and canceled the November meeting at which they had signed up to speak.
When board member Freddy Perez showed up, they repeated their demand that the board set up a meeting with HPD before the city agency filed plans to develop the lot.
When they finally left, they chanted, “We’ll be back.”
Elliott Liu, one of Morning Glory’s founders, said the group doesn’t have definite plans to revisit Board 1’s office but will keep asking for support.
“Our understanding is that the Board won’t pay attention to you unless you’re a local business or someone with a lot of connections in government,” said Liu.
“They’re more focused on serving developers’ interests than serving as a forum for the community.”
District Manager Loftin did not respond to requests for comment on the protest.