Climate change rally in Lismore.
Climate change rally in Lismore. Marc Stapelberg

CBD street to shut down today for protest

UPDATE, Friday, 6.45am: POLICE have reminded people that a protest being held in the Lismore CBD today could cause some disruptions.

The Lismore Extinction Rebellion protest will take place from 10am to 2pm on Magellan Street between Keen and Molesworth Streets.

"Council and police have decided to close Magellan Street to traffic between Keen and Molesworth from 10am to 2pm," the Richmond Police District posted on Facebook this morning.

"Police will be there to monitor crowd behaviour and will take appropriate action as required.

"You may not want to park your car between Keen and Molesworth Streets between 8am and 2pm as you might have difficulty moving it out."

 

Original story: IT IS the rally set to divide Lismore CBD despite the premise of being a "peaceful protest".

Local students and environmental activists will shut down CBD streets on Friday for the Lismore Extinction Rebellion rally.

In a newsletter sent out by the Lismore Chamber of Commerce and Industry, businesses were notified of the demonstrations set to take place in Magellan Street on Friday September 20, between 10am and 2pm.

"Council and police planning will ensure that disruption is minimal and we hope that the event is peaceful and respectful across the community," LCCI co-president Sarah Smith said.

"We understand that this event will bring extra people into the CBD.

"For some business this may be a positive... for others it could be frustrating and disruptive few hours."

The main rally is set to take place at 12pm, with no parking in Magellan St as part of the changed traffic conditions during this time.

Richmond Police District Inspector Chad Deegenaars said police have been consulting with organisers.

"People are allowed to have lawful protests, and that's not an issue, as long as it stays within those timelines because you've got to have consideration for the shop owners and the business operators in that area," he said.

"We do have extra police rostered for it, and they will be attending.

"There has been a planning process so our biggest interest on the day in public safety."

Despite the Facebook event having accumulated hundreds of responses, a number of businesses within the CBD were unaware of plans to shut down their street, having had no contact from police or council.

"Rumour has it there's a rally or something, I heard about it from next door," one business owner on Magellan St said.

"(It will effect) deliveries, customers, everything.

"The kids should be at school.

"There's other ways they can get their message out without affecting the CBD."

Lismore's new Deputy Mayor Darlene Cook said she empathised with local businesses, but ultimately supported the cause.

"This Extinction Rebellion is the expression of today's youth, primarily, but they're very much supported across generations and across socio-economic groups.

"We have millions of people around the world being affected by climate change and are aware of the consequences and are watching the impacts, and the governments are doing nothing.

"You've got to get in the faces of people and make them pay attention."