Bozeman News

Aug 29, 2013 9:15 PM by MTN News - Bozeman

Bozeman schools release Westboro letter to parents, community

The Bozeman Public Schools has released a letter about an upcoming protest by Westboro Baptist Church.
The letter, which will be sent parents and the community today, points out that school officials are prepared for the protest and have plans in place so school operations are not disrupted.
Officials also warn that student's safety is a priority:
"We have a responsibility to ensure student safety, maintain a positive environment free from intimidation and harassment, while at the same time honoring the constitutional rights of free speech for all parties involved. To this end, we will be directing all potential protest or counter protest groups to remain off district property and remain in areas designated as public right-of-way."
The local branch of the ACLU is also developing plans for the community if the Westboro Baptist Church (WBC) protesters do show on Sept. 9.
According to Liz Welch of the ACLU, a public event to make signs is being planned for Sept. 9, tentatively scheduled for 4 p.m.
Along with making signs, Welch and others will use the event to educate the public "on how NOT to engage with the WBC".
Other events planned, but are not finalized at this time, pending clarifications from other officials.
"We encourage people to attend the events and not engage directly with the WBC," Welch said.
We will continue to follow this story and update as information becomes available.

Click here to read letter (pdf)

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