The Met has issued misleading and chilling statements ahead of today’s demonstrations in London, denying our rights to organise and attend protests under current Coronavirus laws.
We have sent an urgent letter to the Met with Liberty to demand a correction. (You can read the letter here.)
This is a misrepresentation of the law that fails to respect both the Coronavirus Regulations and fundamental freedoms of assembly and expression, protected by the Human Rights Act.
Protests organised with a risk assessment and safety measures can be lawful.
By denying that political gatherings can be organised and attended lawfully with safety measures, police are making inevitable protests less safe and more likely to result in prosecutions.
We cannot allow police to trash the rule of law.
Silkie Carlo, Director of Big Brother Watch said:
“In practice, police are increasingly treating protests as banned.
“The incompetence and casual authoritarianism demonstrated by the Met police here is breathtaking. The right to protest is the bedrock of any democracy. It’s clear to me that there’s a deliberate attempt to chill that right and misrepresent the law.”