Judge Rejects Olympics Protest Lawsuit

A federal judge earlier this month dismissed a lawsuit by the Utah Animal Rights Coalition that argued that Salt Lake City officials waited to long to issue the animal rights group a demonstration permit for the 2002 Winter Olympics.

The Utah Animal Rights Coalition applied for such a permit in March 2001, but Salt Lake City did not issue it a permit until November 2001. The animal rights groups sued the city for not having any sort of deadline for granting or refusing permits.

Salt Lake City argued that the delay occurred from a combination of the extended period of time it took the Salt Lake Organizing Committee to finalize its plans for the Olympics as well as the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks which raised new security concerns that had to be addressed at the Olympics. Salt Lake City did later amend its ordinance to require a 28-day response to such requests.

But Judge Paul Cassell ruled that the Utah Animal Rights Coalition lacked standing to bring a lawsuit because it failed to show it had suffered any harm from the delay, noting that “it is undisputed that UARC actually staged several well-organized protests during the Olympics” and had been given notice of its permits three months prior the Winter Olympics.


Judge tosses suit on Oly permits. Michael Vigh, Salt Lake Tribune, August 15, 2002.

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