Defend our right to protest by writing to your MP
Tomorrow, politicians are set to vote on the 'Policing, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill', which would infringe on our right to protest. Drawn up in response to the peaceful Black Lives Matter and Extinction Rebellion protests in 2020, the bill, if it were to be voted through by parliament, would grant the home secretary Priti Patel the power to define what makes a 'peaceful' protest, therefore enabling her and the government to deem protests they class under 'serious disruption' as illegal.
Over 150 rights organisations have co-signed a letter opposing the bill, to Patel and Justice Secretary Robert Buckland. Write to your MP and request that they vote against the bill in parliament tomorrow. You can find out who your MP is, alongside their postal and email addresses here.
Netpol (The Network for Police Monitoring) have launched a petition in response to the 'Policing, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill', instead proposing a 'Charter for Freedom of Assembly Rights'. This charter sets out police protections, rather than restrictions, for the right to protest, alongside other key areas such as an end to the excessive use of force for arrest, surveillance and punishment.
'Netpol...calls on the National Police Chiefs Council (the national body for Chief Constables) to accept greater transparency and accountability for the way protests are policed, based on international human rights standards', they summarise.
If you are able, we encourage you to give what you can to the UK charity Refuge, who support women and children who have been affected by domestic violence. They run a 24 hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline, alongside community outreach projects, refuges and campaigning to raise awareness.
Write to Dame Cressida Dick, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner
After the shocking treatment of women by Metropolitan police officers at the peaceful vigil for Sarah Everard over the weekend, we must demand answers from the force, primarily Dame Cressida Dick, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner.
Cressida Dick CBE QPM
Commissioner of the Police of the Metropolis
New Scotland Yard
Here's an extra one for the women. There's a number of apps you can download to aid you in calling for help should you find yourself in danger:
- One Scream
- My Safety Pin
A lesser known iPhone hack also went viral in the UK over the weekend, whereby pressing the side button on your iPhone five times emits a loud siren, calls emergency services and alerts them to your location, alongside your emergency contacts.