The Occupy movement has spread over hundreds of cities nationwide and over 1,500 cities around the world. The movement is formed around a common goal, which is to protest the way government actions or inactions have rooted widespread discontent. The Occupy movement has encountered opposition from the cities and counties where it is located. Arrests have been made for a number of violations of city and county codes including resistance to police orders and disorderly conduct charges. In our country, freedom of speech and the right to protest have been regarded as inalienable rights. The question becomes how to balance the rights of the people involved against the rights and obligations of the government. This thesis will provide an in depth look at the issues being discussed in cases and hearings involving the Occupy movement. The key issue plaintiffs argue is that their First Amendment rights are being infringed on. In January 2012, both international human rights and United States civil liberties experts at seven law school clinics across the country met and formed the Protest and Assembly Rights Project. The project investigated the United States response to Occupy Wall Street. This thesis will discuss and recap some of their findings. In addition, it will analyze the Federal Constitutional restrictions to protestor's rights and the cases that arise on the grounds of these restrictions, as well as examine how the courts interpret the First Amendment and clarify these issues along with defining protestor's constitutional rights. Based upon the Constitutional rights and legitimate restrictions, the thesis will make appropriate recommendations on the limits for both the protestors and the local government.


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Thesis Completion





Cook, Kathy


Bachelor of Science (B.S.)


College of Health and Public Affairs

Degree Program

Legal Studies


Dissertations, Academic -- Health and Public Affairs;Health and Public Affairs -- Dissertations, Academic







Access Status

Open Access

Length of Campus-only Access


Document Type

Honors in the Major Thesis

Included in

Legal Studies Commons