Eleven Occupy SF protesters were arrested outside Wells Fargo's corporate headquarters in downtown San Francisco on Wednesday morning, but police had no plans to arrest more as the demonstration continues, a police lieutenant said.
Dozens of demonstrators sat down during the morning and early afternoon in front of the building, located at 420 Montgomery St. between Sacramento and California streets. The protesters blocked the doors to the Wells Fargo building while others stood around. More demonstrators marched around the block.
San Francisco Police Department Lt. Troy Dangerfield said 11 people were arrested on Liedesdorff Street, a small street that runs behind the Wells Fargo building.
Dangerfield said that as long as protesters comply with police requests they will not be arrested, and that protesters would be given orders to disperse before any arrests are made.
"They are keeping the sidewalk open for people to walk," Dangerfield said. He said that because the protest has not disrupted sidewalk or street traffic, police have not had to make any requests of protesters since the earlier arrests.
About 200 protesters gathered at Market and Drumm streets at 7 a.m. for the anti-Wall Street rally and march to highlight a number of issues including foreclosures and unemployment. The group is made up of people of all ages, including some parents who brought their children.
Some demonstrators held signs reading "Foreclose Wall Street," "Stop the corporate greed," and "We are the 99 percent."
San Francisco Supervisor John Avalos, who is running for mayor, was among them and addressed the crowd.
"I welcome your fight and I join you in the effort," he said.
They began marching shortly after 7:30 a.m. and headed to the Wells Fargo building.
Kathy Burick, a dance and yoga teacher at San Francisco City College, attended the protests to represent the American Federation of Teachers Local 2121.
"We're suffering so many cuts from this budget crisis that was manufactured on Wall Street," Burick said. She said that continuing budget cuts to education have resulted in the loss of thousands of students since she began teaching at the college 32 years ago.
"We lose the people who need the school the most," she said.
SEIU 1021 member Al Haggett said he is also there with his union and as part of his work organizing and working with retirees in the Bay Area.
"It's nothing but greed," he said of the people "on the top" that run the financial institutions like Wells Fargo.
"I've been working on this campaign for two months," Haggett said, and estimated that he has seen a 300 percent increase in people participating in such demonstrations in that time.
"People are getting the word out," Haggett said.
The march wass organized by a number of groups including Causa Justa Just Cause, Unite Here Local 2850, the California Partnership, Young Workers United and the Chinese Progressive Association.
The groups stated in a press release that they want banks to pay their fair share of taxes and be held accountable for their role in causing the economic crisis.
They say they are rallying in solidarity with the "Occupy Wall Street" movement, which has sparked protests across the country.
In San Francisco's version, Occupy SF, protesters have been camping out in front of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco at Market and Spear streets.
As the crowd gathered for the march Wednesday morning, dozens of Occupy SF protesters remained in their sleeping bags on the sidewalk, some of them still asleep.