This is the last article you can read this month
You can read more article this month
You can read more articles this month
Sorry your limit is up for this month
THOUSANDS are expected to turn out across the country today against the Tories’ “anti-democratic” bid to crack down on protests ahead of a crucial vote in the Lords.
Opposition to the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill has mobilised a wide range of social, racial and environmental justice groups as well as Gypsy, Roma and Traveller (GTR) communities.
Members of these groups will join marches today in London, Bristol, Coventry, Newcastle, Liverpool, Sheffield, Plymouth and more to demand peers reject the new laws.
Monday’s vote in the Lords is one of the final stages before the Bill becomes law.
Labour peer Shami Chakrabarti, who is due to speak at the London demo, warned the anti-protest measures “represent the greatest attack upon peaceful dissent in my adult life.
“This government once positively encouraged pro-Brexit demonstrations and ‘statue defenders,’ and constantly pontificates about free speech.
“Freedom of expression is a two-way street and the ultimate cancel culture comes not with a tweet, but a police baton or prison sentence for non-violent protest.”
If the anti-protest provisions in the legislation are passed, demonstrations outside the House of Commons will be made unlawful.
The legislation also proposes handing police more powers to massively restrict demos, while protesters who cause “serious annoyance” could face prison sentences of up to 10 years.
Marvina Newton of Black Lives Matter Leeds and United for Black Lives said: “Protest has done so much for people who look like me.
“If it wasn’t for protesters such as [Bristol bus boycott organiser] Paul Stephenson, who was once considered disruptive, black people in this country wouldn’t be able to ride on a bus in some cities or even buy a drink in a bar.”
GTR communities have also warned that measures to criminalise trespass will effectively outlaw their way of life.
Community member Anne Maries said: “Police and politicians know that roadside camps exist because authorised camps have not been provided.
“This is a cruel move to criminalise a nomadic culture and forcibly assimilate our children.”
The march also seeks to highlight the potential impact of the Bill on minority communities, including plans to expand stop and search powers.
The London rally is expected to hear from former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and ex-shadow chancellor John McDonnell.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by joining the 501 club.
Just £5 a month gives you the opportunity to win one of 17 prizes, from £25 to the £501 jackpot.
By becoming a 501 Club member you are helping the Morning Star cover its printing, distribution and staff costs — help keep our paper thriving by joining!
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by become a member of the People’s Printing Press Society.
The Morning Star is a readers’ co-operative, which means you can become an owner of the paper too by buying shares in the society.
Shares are £1 each — though unlike capitalist firms, each shareholder has an equal say. Money from shares contributes directly to keep our paper thriving.
Some union branches have taken out shares of over £500 and individuals over £100.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by donating to the Fighting Fund.
The Morning Star is unique, as a lone socialist voice in a sea of corporate media. We offer a platform for those who would otherwise never be listened to, coverage of stories that would otherwise be buried.
The rich don’t like us, and they don’t advertise with us, so we rely on you, our readers and friends. With a regular donation to our monthly Fighting Fund, we can continue to thumb our noses at the fat cats and tell truth to power.
Donate today and make a regular contribution.