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Hodgman Liberals Marching Tasmania Towards a Police State

Cassy O'Connor MP  -  Thursday, 14 November 2019

Tags: Anti-Protest Laws, Democracy, Protest

Cassy O'Connor MP | Greens Leader

The Liberals are determined to stifle the right to peaceful protest in Tasmania. At a time when young people are striking for climate, fighting for justice for Aboriginal people, standing up against new coal mines, protecting our carbon rich forests, the Liberals are threatening to lock them up.

We are dealing with a government that is marching us towards a police state.

The Liberals wants to take away from Tasmanians their democratic right to peaceful protest, to stand up for places they love, to stop dangerous developments, to uphold the pay and conditions of workers.

Tasmania has a proud history of citizens standing up for places they love – Lake Pedder, the Franklin River, Wesley Vale, the Tamar Valley, Ralphs Bay and our beautiful forests. It’s in our DNA to stand up for places we love and this draconian legislation is not going to change that.

There is no basis for this legislation. Tasmania Police already have all the powers they need under existing laws.

The civil unrest we’ve seen in recent times are young people in their thousands striking for action on climate change. This legislation threatens them with jail and massive fines.

There won’t be enough room in the jails to fit in all the thousands of people who are standing up for a safe climate and to protect the places and things that they love here. This legislation will go down, as did its predecessor.

This Bill criminalises peaceful protest on public footpaths, public lands and public waterways. It’s another next step along the road of the corporatizion of public assets in Tasmania.

This legislation is about corporations, it’s not about protecting the rights of Tasmanian workers. It’s dangerous legislation that undermines the democratic foundations of our state.

We will not be supporting this legislation. It is draconian and it is as flawed as the legislation that was condemned by the High Court.

We urge Labor to stand with everyday Tasmanians to protect our democracy. We strongly urge them to stand with the unions and vote against this legislation.