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Protecting Our Democracy from Coercion report

EDM (Early Day Motion) 790: tabled on 23 May 2024

Tabled in the 2023-24 session.

This motion has been signed by 10 Members. It has not yet had any amendments submitted.

Motion text

That this House recognises the fundamental importance of the right to non-violent protest to the democratic process; believes that the freedom of citizens to exercise this right has, in recent years, been undermined by oppressive Government legislation, including the Public Order Act 2023; is concerned by the recommendations of Lord Walney’s recent report on Protecting Our Democracy from Coercion, which, if enacted, would further circumscribe the ability of citizens to hold governments and corporations to account; highlights, in particular, the proposed reforms to the Public Order Act 2023 outlined in recommendations 14 and 20 as well as recommendations 29, 30, and 31, which would create unreasonable and oppressive obstacles to citizens wanting to organise or participate in nonviolent protests and direct actions; notes that, cumulatively, Lord Walney’s recommendations would have a chilling effect on our democracy; further notes that Lord Walney is employed by Rud Pederson Group and Purpose Business Coalition, which are reported to count amongst their clients BP and the defence company Leonardo, and which might reasonably be construed as being legitimate targets for non-violent direct action by campaigners against the arms trade and climate protestors; calls on the Government to reject Lord Walney's recommendations; and recommends that he be immediately removed from his position of Independent Advisor on Political Violence and Disruption.