Cal Poly Pro-Palestinian protestors switch to open occupation on the fifth day of protests

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It’s been five days since the beginning of the Cal Poly Humboldt occupation.

But late Friday night, protesters opened the doors to Siemens Hall where they had been barricaded since Monday.

Protesters began their occupation on Monday, sending a list of demands to the university.

Cal Poly Humboldt released its response early Friday offering to have discussions with students about the university’s financial ties to Israeli interests.

The protests garnered attention from the nation and our community. We spoke to one Palestinian resident who was surprised by the support.

“I think it’s a completely valid response that started at Columbia University. I didn’t think it would happen in my lifetime. It didn’t happen in my dad’s lifetime, who died last year. He waited a long time. We didn’t get any support,” Arcata resident Dan Shahin said.

Things ramped up at the protest around two when Cal Poly Humboldt sent out an e-mail offering a two-hour amnesty window for student protesters. 

“We will take that into consideration when we do our investigation of the matters at hand. It’s an opportunity for safety-, for students to leave and remove themselves from the building in a safe manner with no police around,” Dean of Students Mitch Mitchell said.

A majority of students did not use the checkout process and instead slipped away quietly.

Protesters and occupiers remained on campus past the deadline.

“Apricot”, student protester, cal poly humboldt “we’re definitely happy to be here. We are not afraid. We don’t feel fear. We believe strongly that we are doing the right thing. It’s just important for us to be here to disrupt the system that is carrying out funding to these atrocities.”

Humboldt County Sheriff William Honsal arrived on campus to speak to a delegate of the protesters to work on a peaceful resolution but declined to comment on whether anyone would be arrested after the amnesty deadline.

Around 6 p.m., protesters opened the doors to Siemens Hall and began dismantling barricades.