8:18 p.m. From AP:
Protesters at the Occupy San Francisco movement have significantly cut back on the number of the tents at their encampment, reducing tensions of a possible raid on the encampment.
Mohammed Nuru, director of the city’s Department of Public Works and Barbara Garcia, head of the city’s Health Department, toured the encampment just before sunset on Thursday.
They noted that many tents and tarps had been taken down, with Nuru saying there was “significant improvement” at the encampment.
Mayor Ed Lee had previously warned that police would move in if sanitation problems continued and the camp spread to other areas.
Protesters said the city had given them a 4 p.m. deadline to reduce the number of tents from 200 to 100. City officials did not say how many tents remained, but an Associated Press reporter estimated it was less than 100.
5:27 p.m. SF Weekly talked to Lee administration spokesperson Christine Falvey:
"While [Lee] believes overnight camping in a small public space is not sustainable because of the health and safety problems it causes, he absolutely supports the spirit of the movement and the group's First Amendment right to assemble and protest," she said. He has been working hard to come to some understanding with the group about how they can get their message across without overnight camping and all of the public health and public safety issues that arise from that....
"The group has been unable to meet the guidelines in any sustained manner. At yesterday's meeting Mayor Lee asked for immediate compliance with all of the guidelines that were agreed to. That is where we are at."
5:22 p.m. From the Occupy SF site:
Occupy SF, facing the threat of an Imminent San Francisco Police Raid, calls for community to show support. On Wednesday Nov 16th, Police in riot gear raided a number of Occupy SF tents along Market St in the middle of the night, arresting 8 occupiers-- and threatened to raid the entire occupation. This was part of a wave of crackdowns on the occupy movement for standing up to the 1%. At a meeting between Occupy SF liaisons and Mayor Lee the same day, the Mayor walked out, went to the media to list a litany of complaints and implied that a raid was likely. At the meeting Occupy SF liaisons and community support groups relayed to the Mayor and department heads the camp’s commitment to making progress on a number of vital issues including sanitation, homelessness, mental illness, drug addiction, and others that plagued this city long before this occupation began. The city indicated it would to hold off on a police raid until a 4pm inspection of Occupy SF.
The SF police backed off the last planned raid after a massive show of community support and preparation for nonviolent direct action resistance. We need to show that the communities of the 99% will support the occupations stand against the rule of the 1% and for a better world. Join us!
4:32 p.m. KQED's Stephanie Martin reports that the main group of tents at Justin Herman Plaza received a Department of Public Health notice deeming the encampment a public health nuisance. But only the tents along Market Street received an order to vacate immediately.
4:15 p.m. A Department of Public Works spokesperson tells Mina Kim that the agency only served a notice on the section of tents along Market Street, not the main encampment at Justin Herman Plaza. The spokesperson said the notice doesn't apply to the main encampment.