Downloading PDF. Please wait... Issue 2788

Tory police bill not beaten yet

Issue 2788
Protesters against the police bill they have purple flares and yellow placards

Kill the Bill demonstrations over the weekend (Guy Smallman)

The Tories suffered defeats this week in the House of Lords over parts of their repressive Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts bill. 
 
More amendments were set to be voted. Peers rejected moves to criminalise protesters locking themselves onto objects. 
 
They also rejected amendments that would have outlawed interfering with infrastructure such as airports, railways and printers, and obstructing construction or maintenance works on transport.
 
And out went measures to allow police to stop and search protesters “without suspicion”.
 
Because of the way the Tories have organised the bill’s progress through parliament, these measures cannot be introduced when it returns to the Commons.
 
That’s hugely welcome. It shows that campaigning and demonstrating in a militant way can increase the pressure on the people at the top. 
 
But other defeats in the Lords, such as over plans to ban noisy or disruptive protests and stop protests in Parliament Square can be reinstated to the bill in the Commons. And the Tories will certainly try to do this.
 
The core of the bill remains, including many of the repressive measures and the attacks on Gypsy, Roma and Travellers.
 
As they face multiple crises, the Tories want more authoritarian laws and more powers for the cops. But they do not always succeed. More strikes, protests and dissent can keep up the struggle to kill the police bill and defy whatever is passed.

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