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Bangor Downtown Partnership recommends limiting chalk writing to permitted events

Chalk messages in downtown Bangor generate controversy
Chalk messages in downtown Bangor generate controversy
Published: Aug. 11, 2020 at 5:47 PM EDT
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BANGOR, Maine (WABI) - Members of the Bangor Downtown Partnership voted unanimously Tuesday to recommend the city council ban the use of chalk on public property downtown except as part of a permitted event.

It comes after a recent controversy over the weekend.

A church group wrote chalk messages and scriptures in West Market and Pickering Squares.

Some found the messages to be hateful and targeted at the LGBTQ community.

Committee members questioned how best to address the issue and keep the peace.

One man was issued a no trespassing order while attempting to wash away the chalk.

Bangor Police say the order was issued for harassment, not the act of washing away the text.

There was a question to Bangor Police if there was a path for that order to be dropped.

”I’m thinking of ways that we can help the community move forward and feel better about what transpired.” said Downtown Bangor Partnership President Brian Hinrichs.

Sergeant Wade Betters of the Bangor Police Department said that their only goal in issuing the order was to avoid further conflicts. “We are always open to speaking with anyone who wants to come in and talk maybe several days after an incident where cooler heads prevail. We are open to discussion about that.”

The committee will send on their recommendation on banning chalk unless in permitted event to city leaders.

The next city council meeting is August 24th.

Copyright 2020 WABI. All rights reserved.

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