Close up shot of police dressed in riot gear, weilding batons and riot shields

Stop the Police, Crime and Sentencing and Courts Bill

The draconian new law which would massively curb our right to protest.

Last updated 3 June 2021

As the same time the UK government was claiming to want to promote human rights and democracy around the world in its ‘Integrated Review’, it was pushing a draconian new law through the Houses of Parliament which would massively curb our right to protest, and undermine the rights of travellers in the UK.

What is wrong with the Bill?

This Bill gives police the powers to crack down on protests considered too disruptive or noisy. It grants judges the right to give protestors draconian new prison sentences. It gives special powers to the Home Secretary Priti Patel, allowing her to redefine terms in the Bill without the need for parliamentary approval. So Patel, who has branded Black Lives Matter protests ‘dreadful’, will be able to decide whether a protest is legal or not – a move which is especially concerning considering the disproportionate use of police and judicial powers already on racialised protesters.

The Bill passed its second reading in the House of Commons, which means enough MPs voted for it to allow it pass through to the next stage. However it has been delayed at Committee stage, thanks to sustained protests organised by Sisters Uncut, backed by widespread condemnation from civil society. This Bill is an attack on democracy, but it shows that the government is feeling pressure from increased protests. We know we’re having an impact, and we will not accept an increasingly militarised response.

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