Council reconsiders 45-year old ban on residential protests

Alternatives being assessed

Protesters+hold+signs+on+a+bridge+during+a+family-friendly+protest+June+3.+St.+Louis+Park+leaders+are+considering+amending+or+repealing+an+ordinance+banning+targeted+residential+protests.

Talia Lissauer

Protesters hold signs on a bridge during a family-friendly protest June 3. St. Louis Park leaders are considering amending or repealing an ordinance banning targeted residential protests.

Aisha Hersi

After St. Louis Park officials learned that an ordinance prohibiting targeted residential protests has been on the books for nearly half a century, council members have been considering amending or revoking it. The council can decide whether to keep the policy or update it. 

According to the Star Tribune, there haven’t been any residential demonstrations in St. Louis Park in recent memory, so the current ban hasn’t been implemented. 

The attempt to remove the ban entirely would be in contrast to the increasing number of cities that have passed resolutions prohibiting residential protests.

Though it may be one of the oldest in the metro area, St. Louis Park isn’t alone in having a longstanding residential protest ban. Following demonstrations outside the home of a former executive director of Planned Parenthood Minnesota, White Bear Township passed a similar measure in 1990, according to Star Tribune

According to Spano, he’s keeping his options open when it comes to the ordinance in order to protect 1st amendment rights.

We want to make sure people’s First Amendment rights are protected and their constitutional right to assembly — and that it happens safely”

— Jake Spano

Sophomore Asha Mohamed believes enforcing the ban can negatively impact those who use protests to spread information. 

“The ban can be very harmful and it limits organizations that spread information about important causes,” Mohamed said. 

Sophomore Kevin Martinez-Hererra believes implementing the ban would be an unwise decision.

“By enforcing the ban, our right to free speech and assembly is being tarnished,” Martinez said. 

Although there has been no decision made yet, the council is still looking towards alternatives.