News & Views

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Call on the City of Melbourne to stop silencing protests

You can send a letter to the Lord Mayor of Melbourne with a simple request that the Council put in place clear protocols that prevent its local laws being used to silence protest. Help us call upon the City of Melbourne to stand up for human rights and refuse police requests to silence protests.

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Statement of Concern: The misuse of Council Local Laws to restrict protest

For some time now Victoria Police have been using a City of Melbourne Council by-law – Local Activities Act 2019 – as a way of controlling and restricting protest events. Specifically, police have been calling City of Melbourne compliance officers to enforce Sections 5.7 and 12.8 of this Local Law to restrict any use of amplified sound at protest events. This is our Statement of Concern.

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What is ‘kettling’ & why is it such a problem?

Kettling is a controversial containment technique used by police during protests that has the purported purpose of de-escalating tensions, but has come under heavy criticism for having the opposite effect. It involves the police confining protesters (and sometimes bystanders) to a specific area, with those caught inside only being able to leave at the decision…

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Protest, Repression, and the Law: A Right to Protest?

Writing to your MP, volunteering for a community group, or attending a protest are all types of basic civic engagement that are critical for a strong democracy. However, the ability of concerned citizens to engage in protest is increasingly being discouraged, if not repressed, by a range of legal techniques and political commentary. This is the first recording of a series of free virtual public panels and training sessions around the theme Protest, Repression and the Law that Melbourne Activist Legal Support (MALS) will be running as part of Victorian Law Week 2020.

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Open Letter to Victoria Police

In reply and in light of protest events planned in Melbourne for the month of October we take this opportunity to remind Victoria Police senior command and all operational commanders assigned to public order policing duties over the coming weeks, that ‘disruption to others’ does not justify limiting the Right to Peaceful Assembly.

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Is the Max Brenner protestors’ court victory an Australian legal watershed?

Adam Fletcher, Monash University The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel is controversial on at least two levels. First, it targets businesses, which some (including the Victorian Government) see as an illegitimate means of political protest. Secondly, it targets Israel, which some see as inherently anti-Jewish. This is not an article about the…

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