Amid a season of strikers and war protesters, agencies responsible for security during the Rose Parade are actively preparing for possible protests ahead of the New Year’s event.
The city of Pasadena has worked with numerous law enforcement and emergency organizations, according to Lisa Derderian, public information officer. The Rose Parade is considered a high-profile event, which triggers support from federal agencies in security planning, she said.
THE Pasadena Police Department said it would implement increased security along the 5½-mile parade route. Officers will resolve any issues and remove spectators who break the law or disrupt the parade. K-9 units will also patrol Colorado Boulevard.
“We have plans in place and resources that will be on site and others that we can call into town if necessary,” Derderian said. “We had planned for the worst case scenario, but we are hoping for a beautiful and peaceful parade and match.”
Preparedness is based on current trends and information from federal, state and local agencies.
“We want them to have a good time,” Derderian said of parade participants. “We have gone through different scenarios and we are confident that we can cope with any situation.”
Protesters advocate for a ceasefire in Gaza have disrupted traffic twice in recent weeks at Los Angeles International Airport, prompting the Los Angeles Police Department to intervene. Derderian said Pasadena police coordinated with a multi-agency task force that handles large protests, including the LAPD, which responded to the LAX incidents.
But protests are nothing new to Tournament of Roses officials, who have seen many in the parade’s 135-year history.
In 1990, AIDS activists interrupted the parade for 10 minutes by organize a session in front of the Spirit of America “First Symbols of Freedom” float.
In 2011, anticipating a protest by Occupy demonstrators, Pasadena police have beefed up an already robust presence. Parade officials then allowed protesters to march through the streets after all the floats had passed.
On Monday, hotel workers plan to establish picket lines. Thousands of workers in Southern California walked off the job July 1 to demand higher wages and better benefits. Over the next six months, Unite Here Local 11 made progress in contract negotiations with numerous hotels. But the union intends to put pressure specifically on the Hilton Pasadena and other hotels in the city that are currently without a contract.
Tournament of Roses chief executive David Eads said while the event was prepared to deal with any disruption that may arise, he hopes the focus will remain on the planned events, which this year include three performances mid-term – against a previous act – also. as shown in the opening and closing. Six-time Tony Award winner Audra McDonald is the grand marshal.
“The Pasadena Tournament of Roses is working closely with our law enforcement partners to monitor and remain vigilant for potential protests during the Rose Parade or Rose Bowl game,” Eads said. “Ensuring the safety of our valued guests, participants, volunteers, staff and everyone who plays a role (in) the success of our events remains the Tournament of Roses’ top priority.”
California Daily Newspapers