Inside Occupy LA…. OLA Needs YOUR Help To Feed The Occupation

Story and Photos By Larry Alger of the WallStreetSwindler.Com

It’s not as easy as you may think sitting there in Encino, Redondo, or Covina.
Imagine the logistics of maintaining the occupation. Living on the lawns of the old LA City Hall in a tent, using a Port-a-Potty, exclusively, a washcloth with a bottle of water and maybe a bottle of hand sanitizer here and there to clean yourself, it’s not easy.

Picture this, taking on the responsibility of feeding all those who are not only living on the lawns but tending to the hunger of all those curious visitors down to see what Occupy Los Angeles is all about. It is an awesome responsibility, especially for someone who also living in a tent, don’t you think? And pulling it all together with 100% donated resources is just Amazing to me!

This is what Michelle has done and she deserves any and all accolades we all can give her. At the beginning she and a few others rounded up some donations from several near by restaurants as well as what ever food any supporters would drive up to the curb and drop off to them. As it grew from 10 or 20 folks to 50 then 100 then several hundred, the tasks grew exponentially. As previously reported, this crowd is not the kind that can stroll down to MickyDs or Carls Jr on Broadway twice a day for breakfast or dinner.

So as the accomplishments of the food tent grew, thus came the attention of the LA County Health Department imposing the LEGAL rules and regulations of food service. It makes no difference to them whether you SELL or GIVEAWAY food to the public, do it right or be shut down AND fined up to $5,000 per violation. And they do not care if you live in a tent, you, Michelle, (who is designated as the Food Tent One-In-Charge) are the one whose name will be on all the paperwork.

Michelle, like other core members of this movement here in LA, is determined and resilient. When she was educated to the rules of the game, she adapted immediately. Now instead of come one come all donations of food it has to meet the criteria laid out by County Health, donations must be from a state approved source. A restaurant, a store or other state certified food source. Pizzas are the staple that people now donate because they can be delivered fast before they temperature drops off below 130 degrees. That is the Health code criteria. If hot food does not have a service temperature of 130 or more, it cannot be given out to the people. Cold Sandwiches like wise must be from a state certified store or kitchen. And they must be handed out within 4 hrs of delivery. This is generally not a problem because as the food comes in, it gets consumed right away. And donations of snacks like nuts or Chips, or salads like macaroni or potato can not be in bulk but must be in sealed individual serving sizes.

Perfect BULK donations are boxes of Granola bars, candy bars, packs of trail mix snacks and single serving chip packages. (Think COSTCO treat and snack packs). No cold cereal because NO MILK donations please. Milk requires special handling even for individual serving carton sizes. But Instant Oatmeal and Ramon Noodle Cups are gratefully accepted donations.

Michelle asked me to tank all the wonderful people here in SoCal who have helped keep the food donations coming in. She also asked me to give a big Shout-Out to these folks for all their commitment to Keep Occupy LA Fed!

Rocket Pizza – The guys have been committed to donating 40 Pies a DAY since the beginning to the end.


Home Boy Industries – Coffee and individual SALAD servings


Home Girl Industries – Baked goods and pastries

Se Cheese Confections (All the way from West LA) for her famous Cheesecake bites in a cup.


So the next time one of your friends or coworkers looks at there news from downtown and says why don’t they all just get a job, you can tell them they DO have jobs, fighting for America’s right to economic and electoral justice. And RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW, what could be more important work than that?

Short URL: http://www.wallstreetswindler.com/?p=18503

Posted by on Oct 17 2011. Filed under Occupy Wall Street L.A.. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

1 Comment for “Inside Occupy LA…. OLA Needs YOUR Help To Feed The Occupation”

  1. The Kitchen rules and Health Dept regulations stated above are helpful, but there are other stories abounding, like the Finance Committee claiming that there can be no festival event Permits without first forming a non profit corp [it seems to be that committee’s agenda and drive for now] …A meeting at 6 pm by Financial Committee [only 4 of 10 members, so stated, were there, moderating and fielding questions and suggestions ] on 10/16 Sun evening where this also was debated.. and repeatedly the same story was repeated….. “we need to have….incorporation papers ….before we can serve food from Kitchen …” ..It is not clear whether this stated kitchen w/health dept agreement need is the excuse to verify their decision stating it thus as a NEED to form into a non-profit CORP….or whether it is true and required…that there can be NO permits w/o those prior requirements…it is now UNCLEAR.
    Someone else at GA on 10/17 on mic said Kitchen was closed, but mentioned nothing about needing a corp to get a permit…..Different folks have different stories …and some of us are confused and thus becoming distrustful too….Please have someone here also clarify these issues if possible, and also post it prominently n OLA website too…..thanx for all you do so well so far.

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