‘Kill the Bill’ banners mysteriously appear in LUU
Banners have been mysteriously put up in Leeds University Union today in protest of the new Police, Sentencing and Courts Bill. Today, the bill starts its next stage in the House of Lords.
The new bill introduces new police powers and controversially includes the ability to imprison protesters for up to 10 years for actions “deemed to be disruptive”. This could include vandalising statues, which was a common tactic in last year’s Black Lives Matter protests, or lock-ons, a technique often involving specially-designed hardware to make a person difficult to remove from their place of protest.
Police could also be given powers to carry out stop and search “without suspicion” in protest contexts.
One of the banners in LUU (located in The Refectory) reads “protect Gypsy, Roma and Traveller Communities”. The PCSC bill proposes to criminalise ‘unauthorised encampments’ and establish trespass as a criminal offence. Many claim that this threatens the community’s way of life and the bill has been called “legislative cleansing”.
A ‘Kill the Bill’ protest is taking place in London today with speakers including Labour MP Nadia Whittome and Marvina Newton from BLM Leeds. Protests in Leeds are due to take place in the coming weeks.