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Food Not Bombs gives away food without issue from police

The Buffalo organization Food Not Bombs experienced no problems on Saturday after being dispersed by police on Monday for offering free food to the public.

The group has been distributing free and healthy food for 20 years, typically at Lafayette Square on Mondays and Saturdays, said Jennifer D. Albert, one of the food sharers. But after Buffalo Police received a complaint call last Monday, they asked the group to leave, saying the group lacked a permit to be there.

Albert said that two local, health certified kitchens donate their space to Food Not Bombs, and participants give away free, vegan meals at lunchtime. Since no money is exchanged, she said, a permit shouldn't be necessary.

After Monday's incident, 80 supporters showed up at Lafayette Square on Saturday to support the group, more than normal. Albert said one police officer was present at the start of the meal service at 1 p.m. but eventually left. Albert credited the community it support of the organization.

"It went well," Albert said. "Today was a big, strong turnout."

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