Durham activists plan solidarity with Baltimore, set protest for Friday

Friday, May 1, 2015
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DURHAM (WTVD) -- A Durham activist group says it's answering a national call for solidarity with Baltimore demonstrators.

The Durham Solidarity Center is promoting a Black Lives Matter/May Day march on social media.

A rally is planned for Friday, May 1, at 5 p.m. The group says it will start at Durham Police headquarters and march to the Durham County jail.

"There may be some civil disobedience taking place that will not involve destruction of property," the group posted while encouraging participants with other plans to demonstrate at another time and place.

Previous demonstrations resulted in arrests after protesters blocked traffic on the Durham Freeway and near the Streets at Southpoint Mall.

Authorities are already planning for the protest. The Durham County Sheriff's Office and the Durham Police Department are working together, saying they won't stop demonstrators from protesting. But, there will be a significant law enforcement presence to keep the peace.

Local organizers will also speak out against inmate restrictions at the Durham County jail.

The sheriff's office has come under fire for limiting the amount of time inmates spend outside their cells as a safety measure.

Organizers have said the protest at the jail will involve families, including children.

A department spokesperson says there are plans to continuously increase inmate walk times outside their cells over the next few weeks.

The sheriff's office says it was unsuccessful in its attempts to talk to the organizers. They promise to be ready regardless of the size of the crowd.

The Durham city ordinance requires protesters to obtain a parade permit, to demonstrate during daylight hours, and to avoid property damage.

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