Roads: Demonstrations

Home Office written question – answered on 24th July 2019.

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Photo of Lord Tebbit Lord Tebbit Conservative

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the effectiveness of the legal provisions governing the balance between (1) the freedom of passage along public highways, and (2) the right to hold public demonstrations on public highways.

Photo of Baroness Williams of Trafford Baroness Williams of Trafford The Minister of State, Home Department, Minister for Equalities (Department for International Development)

Peaceful protest is a vital part of a democratic society. It is a long-standing tradition in this country that people are free to gather together and to demonstrate their views, provided that they do so within the law.

There is, of course, a balance to be struck. Protestors’ rights need to be balanced with the rights of others to go about their business. Rights to peaceful protest do not extend to unlawful activity and the police have powers to deal with any such acts.

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