Nato Summit Protests - Safety Tips - Chicago 2012

Friday, May 18, 2012

It’s a beautiful day today in Chicago. Blue ski, calm breeze and 80 degrees. I fear the calm before the storm may be upon us. Apparently so does building management at my office in the South Loop. 

Authorities speculate 10,000 to 100,000 protesters will be active beginning today with major events taking place on Sunday and Monday, including an attempt to prevent Boeing employees from entering their headquarters on Monday morning. According to MintPress, a Chicago Police Sergeant warns that “Nato Summit protests are going to be unprecedented, saying the upcoming event will incite rallies that will far outdo those seen during the 2003 Iraq War protests. The challenges we are going to face during the NATO Summit are going to be unlike any that we have ever encountered.” Some websites are claiming as many as 500,000 descending on Chicago for the two-day event.

Concerned? We’ll rightfully so perhaps. There were approximately 40,000 protesters in Seattle for the 1999 World Trade Organization (WTO) event. They blocked streets preventing the WTO delegates from accessing the convention center during their morning commute on December 30th. They malayee unfolded over the next three (3) days resulting in over 600 arrests and approximately $20 million dollars in damages to commerical businesses and lots sales!

How about last summer in Vancouver, Canada. Yes, Bristish Columbia Canada, one of the most peaceful and beautiful places on the planet. Speculation has as many as 155,000 within the downtown corridor after the Canucks Game 7 Stanley Cup Championship loss to the Bruins. Over 100 were arrested. 140 people were injured, including 4 stabbings and 17 cars burned. Vancouver suffered approximately $4.2 million in damages.

What can you do to stay safe during the 2012 Chicago NATO Summit. Watch my Fox News Chicago Segment from this past Wednesday:

5 Safety Precautions for the NATO Summit:

    1. If possible, avoid areas where protesters will congregate: Federal Plaza & Boeing
    2. If you come across protesters, get out of the area quickly (safe places include hospitals,
      public schools and even gas stations b/c of the cameras)
    3. Do not attempt to stop protesters. Do not attempt to protect property. This is a
      police manner and could get you seriously injured.
    4. Protect yourself by cheering for them or showing them sympathy / alliance until you
      can escape the area. They will be less likely to attack you if they feel you are on their
    5. Obey Chicago Police commands – They’ll likely be fatigued and on edge. They’ll be
      working to keep us safe and protect our city. Support them by doing what they ask.

Here is the Secret Service’s Press Release

Here is the link for Notify Chicago

Stay completely clear of the following areas beginning Fri/Sat through next Tues:

South Loop
Printer’s Row
Millennium Park

I would use caution in all areas surrounding as well: Riv No; West Loop; Riv West; Streeterville; GCoast, etc. There are some pretty serious concerns not being aired.

Hopefully all will go well! Expect major inconveniences and crazy traffic either way. For thoseof you living in the South Loop, I’d for sure get away for a while.