Protest suppression laws review must involve public consultation

Australian Greens

The NSW Government will be conducting a 2 year review of the anti-protest legislation that was introduced by the Coalition and supported by Labor in April 2022. These laws mean protestors blocking certain roads and bridges can be slammed with $22,000 fines and 2 years in prison. An open lettercalling for the review to be open to the public has been sent to the Premier today from more than 28 organisations; including Young Labor, the Australia Palestine Advocacy Network, the Jewish Council of Australia, the NSW Council for Civil Liberties and the Greens NSW.

Greens MP and spokesperson for justice Sue Higginson said “These laws were and still are an attack on democracy and were supported by both Liberals and Labor to function as a direct suppression on the implied right to political expression in NSW,”

“The range of non-government organisations that have joined together to call for a public review of these laws is impressive and should cause the Premier to reconsider the current plan for a closed door review that will likely recommend the laws remain in place,”

“Premier Minns came into power on the promise of transparency and he has publicly stated that he wants to bring the whole community along with his Government, this is the perfect opportunity. The Jewish Council, the Imams Council, various unions and even sections of his own party have joined this call for a transparent and public review of these terrible laws,”

“If Chris Minns is serious about the responsibility that his Government has to the people of NSW, then he must act and ensure that the review is open to public submissions, hearings and is genuinely responsive to the needs and calls of the community,”

“It would be truly tragic if the Labor Government continues to pander to shock jock radio hosts that are increasingly irrelevant as a dwindling bastion of bigoted and ignorant conservatism that has no place in modern society,” Ms Higginson said.

/Public Release. View in full here.