A coalition of students and their supporters from New York University and The New School chant "show me what democracy looks like" as they march towards Zuccotti Park in lower Manhattan on Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2011 in New York. The marchers joined hundreds camped at the park in the Occupy Wall Street Protest, which started on Sept. 17 with a few dozen demonstrators who tried to pitch tents in front of the New York Stock Exchange and has since grown into a nationwide movement. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)
Demonstrators have organized spin-offs of the Occupy Wall Street protests Thursday in five Texas cities, including Dallas.
Hundreds of people were expected to begin a protest in downtown Austin called Occupy Austin. A group of homeless activists were also expected to set up a campsite in a nearby city park. Organizers were using social media sites to coordinate activities.
There also were plans for protests in Dallas, Houston, San Antonio and McAllen. Hundreds of people using Facebook said they would attend those protests.
An estimated 200 people were protesting in Dallas just after 9 a.m. Thursday.
The demonstrators are building on the Occupy Wall Street protests in New York, where thousands of people have protested corporate greed. Organizers say they are demanding that politicians pay more attention to average citizens.
Similar protests have started across the country. Each is organized by a local general assembly, and there are no official leaders.
Protesters have asked students at the University of Texas at Austin to leave their classrooms and march to City Hall. In Dallas, demonstrators planned to march on the Federal Reserve building and in Houston, they will protest in front of the J.P Morgan Chase building.
"Occupy Houston is a local expression of the global movement to end the corporate corruption of our democracy," organizers said in a press statement. "It is a volunteer-organized effort providing infrastructure and support for Houstonians to exercise their First Amendment rights."
On Wednesday, union members joined the Occupy Wall Street protesters, adding thousands to people to the demonstrations that began Sept. 17.