Protesters set to march over mishandled Hard Rock collapse

WWL Newsroom
January 24, 2020 - 6:36 am
hard rock Hotel

A Protest march demanding accountability from New Orleans officials over how the Hard Rock collapse is being handled, is scheduled for today. It is set to start at 3 p.m. on North Rampart up the street from the collapse site.

The city’s frustration over the incident came to a boil when one victim’s body was publicly exposed recently.

 “People realize that when you have a situation where three people die on a job site that someone has to be held accountable for that,” says March organizer Trey Monaghan

The remains of two victims, 63-year-old Jose Ponce Arreola, and 36-year-old Quinnyon Wimberly still remain trapped in the building’s rubble. City officials say it’s too dangerous to remove them at the moment.

The protesters have three demands, one of them being that the City stop using language indicating that they are collaborating with the construction firm responsible, and start taking them to task.

“If you had three dead bodies in your house right now would the City of New Orleans be working with you to peacefully turn yourself in? Would they be working in “conjunction” with you? Or, would they have the SWAT team at your door, kicking down your door,” says Monaghan.

The other demands are the City hold a public hearing on the incident, and that the City adopt a Responsible Bidder Ordinance that would potentially prevent future collapses.

Monaghan says the failure of the city to retrieve the victim’s bodies and to take down the site in a timely manner is insulting to the victim’s families and everyone who lives in New Orleans.

“You can see it when you are crossing the River, you can see it from the French Quarter, you can see this disaster from almost any place in this city and we are no further ahead than we were 100 days ago,” says Monaghan.

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