MIAMI (CBS4) – For a third day protesters will Occupy Miami plan to rally near the Government Center in downtown Miami.
In an effort to make sure their message is heard, organizers have scheduled a press conference for 10:30 a.m. They’re also planning a concert at the encampment Monday evening. This is one of several protests going on around Florida and the world to call attention to what they call financial and social inequality.
“The simple issue that this boils down to the corrupting influence of corporate dollars in political campaigns,” said Bruce Wayne Stanley. “We feel that voices of 99 percent of society are being marginalized.”
And that is what the group hopes to change with messages directed to local and federal government.
“All of our laws are written by money and not by the people and that needs to change,” said Pedro Santana.
Artist Nicole Soden created an installation that she described as a serpent eating its own tail.
“It really represents the endless path of consumption, and greed and consumerism,” said Soden.
Those are the very issues that brought Gihan Perera, director of the Miami Workers Center, to the protest to show his support.
“The message that these young people have and the people that are out here and the people of the Occupy movement is something that we’ve been facing in Liberty City and the poor sections of the community for years and years,” said Perera.
The Occupy Miami event began at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday at the Bayfront Park Amphitheatre. By 2 p.m. approximately 400 participants were in attendance. Later in the day hundreds turned to a thousand and the group marched to the Government Center in Downtown Miami.
About 30 participants, who took part in Saturday’s rally, camped out overnight and rallied again on a soggy Sunday.
“Yeah I hardly got any sleep but that’s because I was inspired, you know it was a good thing I guess,” said Kimo Nour.
So how long was Nour willing to stay?
“As long as it takes to be recognized because right now we’ve been branded as a bunch of liberals hippies, just bums really,” said Nour, “We’re not, we’re people just like everyone else, we’re the 99 percent.”
Johanna Thompson set up a tent for herself and her two daughters.
“I understand that the banks and the government are giving money to their bosses who make millions and millions of dollars,” said 10-year old Jazz Thompson.
Johanna Thompson said she hopes this will be a real learning experience for her children.
“I want them one to be able to experience what democracy looks like but I also have two young ladies coming up in America right now so I really do want them to be empowered,” said Thompson.
Occupy Miami also has their own Facebook page for those interested in participating in future rallies.
About 300 people took part in an Occupy Ft. Lauderdale march on Saturday and more than 1,500 people took part in an Occupy Orlando protest.
In Chicago, 175 people were arrested over the weekend when protestors refused to remove their tents from Grant Park.
For a list of events across the U.S. visit Occupy Together’s Web site.