The protest has been organized by the Camdenton Area TCE Contamination Board, a public Facebook group with more than 1,000 members who actively research and discuss contamination believed to be caused by the old manufacturing plant located in a shared residential area on Sunset Drive.

A public demonstration has been planned by concerned citizens of Camden County to make their voices heard regarding the contamination of trichloroethylene (TCE) with which the city of Camdenton has been dealing for nearly three decades.

Scheduled from 5 to 7 p.m. on Monday, July 3, at the Camden County Courthouse, over two dozen people have RSVP’d, though expected turnout is unknown as the event has also been publicized in other local media and promoted in other Lake-area Facebook groups.

The protest has been organized by the Camdenton Area TCE Contamination Board, a public Facebook group with more than 1,000 members who actively research and discuss contamination believed to be caused by the old manufacturing plant located in a shared residential area on Sunset Drive.

“Please join us to bring awareness to the community about the TCE contamination in Camdenton MO and other pollutants that residents are dealing with,” organizer Jessica Bockoven wrote on the official event page. “Many residents have suffered far too much from this unresolved issue and so will future generations if we do not make a stand. This will be a very peaceful stand in and all are welcome!”

Fellow organizer James Gohagan said he believes the demonstration would be “cathartic” for citizens who have had family members affected by the contamination, including former employees of Sundstrand and Modine, as well as neighbors who live near the plant that closed down in 2012.

Gohagan has reached out to the Camden County Commissioner’s Office, and most recently the Camden County Sheriff’s Office, in an attempt to clarify the process for holding a public demonstration on public property owned by the County.

According to the CCSD Lt. Arlyne Page, the demonstration falls under the category of free speech and the office does not issue permits. The county will have deputies stationed during the event to prevent “unruly” behavior.

The Commission had previously discussed the possibility of approving a permit for the event, but according to First District Commissioner Bev Thomas a permit is not required for this particular demonstration and the Commission is just asking the protesters to respect the property and employees while using the courthouse lawn.

The Commission has previously approved use of the courthouse lawn for blue ribbons in support of Kids’ Harbor and also a National Day of Prayer ceremony, but no agenda items have been scheduled regarding this planned usage.

The city of Camdenton officials said they did not receive any requests for a permit through the police department or city administrator’s office.