Mark Morey, Secretary, Unions NSW responds to the NSW Government's proposed anti-protest laws and vows to march on the streets and to the High Court to defend our right to peaceful protest.
The State Government’s proposed anti-protest laws are deeply concerning and unions will consider a constitutional challenge to the bill if it goes ahead.
We have deep misgivings about the attempt to restrict peaceful protesters’ activities in public places.
Public protesting has been a socially important and influential part of NSW's history for over 200 years and is a crucial element of democracy and ensuring collective voices can be heard. The NSW Government should not be seeking to silence those it disagrees with especially in a robust democracy such as ours.
There is no justification for draconian laws that restrict the rights of people to voice political and industrial concerns over issues that can affect their everyday lives.
These laws will only serve to target and disband peaceful protesters who join together over common causes impacting heavily on the people of NSW's right to political expression and communication.
Unions believe passionately in the freedom of political expression and will consider a constitutional challenge if these anti-protest laws go ahead.
This isn't the first time the NSW Government has attempted to silence the voice of their political opponents. In 2012 The NSW Liberal Government sought to restrict the voice of working people through their electoral funding laws.
These laws were knocked down by a High Court challenge mounted by Unions NSW which found the laws to be a restriction on the right to freedom of political expression.
We will happily march back to the streets and the High Court to defend the entitlement of any protester to exercise their democratic right to freedom of political communication.