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Large crowd demonstrates in front of Denver coffee shop after ad offends community members

Posted at 5:25 PM, Nov 25, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-27 10:41:29-05

DENVER -- Community members in Five Points sent a strong message on Saturday, days after an ad infuriated neighbors for appearing to celebrate gentrification. 

The couple hundred demonstrators, who stood in front of ink! Coffee at 29th and Larimer, urged people to boycott the business after its decision to place a sign which read "Happily Gentrifying the neighborhood since 2014."

This sparked outrage from people who have felt pushed out of Five Points by gentrification and the higher cost of living it brings with it.

Ink, along with the ad agency it hired, apologized. But those apologies were not enough for residents in the area.

"The apology isn't enough because it shouldn't have happened in the first place," said demonstrator Catherine Whitworth.

What started as a controversy over a sign has now led to what the demonstrators believe is a bigger issue; developers moving in and taking over the neighborhood they grew up in.

"They're being pushed out. The cost of everything is going up," said Whitworth.

Lisa Calderon, co-chair of the Colorado Latino Forum, had a message for elected officials.

"You have failed us," she said to the large crowd. "When it comes to economic opportunity for this neighborhood, you have failed us. You have left us behind."


In photos: Large crowd protests ink! Coffee shop after gentrification 'joke' outrage