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This past week there were several demonstrations within Bismarck city limits in which the organizers did not take the proper steps required by city ordinance. The Bismarck Police Department would like to remind anyone planning a public demonstration of the guidelines to follow.
An organizer of a demonstration or picketing event is not required by City Ordinance to obtain a permit from the City. City Ordinance requires the organizer of a demonstration of a group of 30 or more individuals to provide notice of the intent to picket or demonstrate and to provide certain information regarding the planned event to the chief of police at least 48 hours before the event is to begin. This can be accomplished by filling out the Notice of Intent to Picket/Demonstrate form.
Bismarck City Ordinance provides that demonstrations and picketing may be conducted on public sidewalks in the city, insofar as they don’t disrupt, block, obstruct, or interfere with pedestrian or vehicular traffic.
It is the role of the Bismarck Police Department to ensure the safety of the citizens and to maintain the free passage of the streets and public sidewalks, unless closure is otherwise allowed. By following the guidelines set for public demonstrations the police department is better able to work with the organizers to help them have a safe and orderly event.
The notification form mentioned above can be obtained at the Bismarck Police Department or online at www.bismarcknd.gov/documentcenter/view/4705