Staten Island Mall ‘disappointed,’ at anti-mandate protest, but won’t ‘publicly’ address security challenges

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — After a group of protesters stormed the Staten Island Mall Food

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — After a group of protesters stormed the Staten Island Mall Food District on Saturday, the shopping center’s officials say they are “disappointed” about the protest, but declined to comment about security challenges related to New York City’s coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine mandates.

The protest on Saturday drew at least 20 demonstrators who barged into the food court at the New Springville mall on Saturday chanting “USA” and anti-mandate slogans, including “F— Joe Biden.”

Caught on video by Oliya Scootercaster, a freelance journalist with freedomnews.tv, the protest drew ire about the indoor dining vaccine mandate instituted by Mayor Bill de Blasio for all New York City eateries. Demonstrators can be seen chanting “my body, my choice,” and reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

“We are disappointed that we were the location for this protest. We are following the mandates from New York City,” said Lindsay Kahn, a spokeswomen for the Mall’s parent company, the Chicago, Ill.-based Brookfield Properties.

Caught on video by a person who goes by Oliya Scootercaster, a freelance journalist with freedomnews.tv, the protest drew ire about the indoor dining vaccine mandate instituted by Mayor Bill de Blasio for all New York City eateries. Demonstrators can be seen chanting “my body, my choice,” and reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

Mall protest

Caught on video by Oliya Scootercaster, a freelance journalist with freedomnews.tv, the protest drew ire about the indoor dining vaccine mandate instituted by Mayor Bill de Blasio for all New York City eateries. Demonstrators can be seen chanting “my body, my choice,” and reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

When asked if the Mall would be beefing up security procedures following the protest, she said Brookfield doesn’t publicly discuss its security protocols. “We are constantly reviewing and evaluating them, but we can not disclose what they are because it could impact the effectiveness,” said Kahn.

Mall policy allows patrons to purchase food to go in the Food District. The city mandate only refers to proofing for vaccine status for indoor dining. From the video provided to the Advance/SILIve.com, it appears the protesters — some toting American flags or wearing red, white and blue clothing, and at least one man sporting a shirt that read “Trump won” — entered the food court area and began chanting. It was unclear how they then entered the dining area without showing proof of vaccination.

Mall protest

Caught on video by Oliya Scootercaster, a freelance journalist with freedomnews.tv, the protest drew ire about the indoor dining vaccine mandate instituted by Mayor Bill de Blasio for all New York City eateries. Demonstrators can be seen chanting “my body, my choice,” and reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

A source familiar with the Mall’s handling of the new rules for indoor dining told the Advance/SILive.com that management has been strictly enforcing the vaccination mandate since it was instituted earlier this month.

While the NYPD said there were no arrests made as a result of the protest, Kahn said the Mall “handled” the situation and “addressed those who violated our code of conduct.”

“We want to stress, we strive to create a safe and peaceful environment for everyone,” she said.

New York City is the the first in the country to institute vaccine mandates for several businesses, including all restaurants, gyms and concert venues.

Mall protest

Caught on video by Oliya Scootercaster, a freelance journalist with freedomnews.tv, the protest drew ire about the indoor dining vaccine mandate instituted by Mayor Bill de Blasio for all New York City eateries. Demonstrators can be seen chanting “my body, my choice,” and reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

DE BLASIO ADDRESSES PROTEST

After sparking national attention, de Blasio addressed Saturday’s Mall protest in his Monday morning press briefing.

“I don’t think there is a culture of opposition in the end. I think some people are opposed, but it has not manifested in some bigger reality,” said de Blasio. “They went, they had a protest, they left. That’s that. Again, this number doesn’t lie. Over 82% of adults in New York City have received one dose, and more will be — I guarantee it — this week.”

“This is a staggering figure in Staten Island, in all five boroughs,” de Blasio added.

‘EMBARRASED’ STATEN ISLANDERS

Following the protest, many Staten Islanders took to Twitter to express their “embarrassment” of the event and how it makes borough residents look to the rest of the city and beyond.

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https://www.silive.com/coronavirus/2021/09/staten-island-mall-disappointed-at-anti-mandate-protest-but-wont-publicly-address-security-challenges.html