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Joint Briefing on the Public Order Bill for the House of Lords Report Stage

Protest in London for Black Lives Matter
© © James Eades

This briefing, circulated ahead of the Bill’s Committee Stage debate in the House of Lords, urges all Peers to oppose the Bill in its entirety.

We have joined 74 organisations to urge parliamentarians to defend protest rights and support amendments to mitigate the Public Order Bill’s worst effects. The organisations span the sectors of:

  • human rights
  • privacy
  • criminal justice
  • democracy
  • children’s rights
  • international development
  • environment
  • freedom of speech and expression
  • health
  • trade union
  • violence against women and girls
  • racial justice
  • housing
  • legal
  • community
  • migrants’ rights
  • faith

Five UN Special Rapporteurs have said that the Bill “could result in undue and grave restrictions” on civil liberties if not seriously amended. No coherent case has been made by the Government for these expansive new powers, with the Director of Public Prosecutions stating recently that the authorities “already have the legal tools” they need.

We oppose the Public Order Bill’s anti-protest measures in their entirety.

We urge peers to attend the Report Stage of the Public Order Bill, speak up to defend protest rights, and support amendments to mitigate its worst effects.

Joint civil society briefing for report stage of the Public Order Bill