Young and Old to Unite as Seniors Join 'Occupy'

Senior citizens fighting cuts to social safety net programs will march with Occupy Chicago Monday

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    NEWSLETTERS

    About 130 protesters refuse to budge from Grant Park Saturday night, and are arrested for the second time. (Published Sunday, Oct 23, 2011)

    Occupy Chicago is about to learn what civil disobedience was like back in the day.

    Senior citizens fighting cuts to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security will join Occupy Chicago protestors Monday for a rally in the Loop.

    An estimated 500 seniors from a slew of citywide grassroots organizations will meet with representatives Jan Schakowsky and Danny Davis at 10 a.m. at Federal Plaza, said Lori Clark, an official from the Jane Addams Senior Caucus, which is hosting the gathering. They will then march toward Jackson and Clark.

    The elderly protesters are calling for a federal budget that strengthens social safety net programs for seniors and low-income families. They also want financing secured for housing and urban development programs.

    "Many older women, especially older women of color, would suffer the brunt of these cuts," said Mary Burns, leader of Jane Addams Senior Caucus, in a statement. “Senator Durbin and Senator Kirk need to hear that seniors are the members of the 99% and have something to say about this issue and these programs.”

    As part of Occupy Chicago's weekend teach-in, Northwestern Sociology professor Mary Pattillo spoke on public housing, and Ben Joravsky, a writer with the Chicago Reader, gave a speech titled TIFs 101- Chicago's Budget for the 1 percent.

    Monday marks the 45th day of occupation in Chicago.