Black Protest Legal Support know that information is important. An imbalance of information can give one group an unfair advantage over another.
Protesting is a legal right, and the police have to have very specific grounds to stop you. If you are stopped by the police it is important to know your rights and how you should react, so that you can’t be intimidated unjustly.
We will be providing more information in specific articles in our blog posts. For now, here is the basic information which you need to know.
The Right to Protest
The right to protest is protected under Articles 10 and 11 of the Convention on Human Rights – the rights to freedom and assembly.
These rights are qualified. This means that public authorities, such as the police, can only interfere with a protest if it is deemed necessary to protect public health and safety, among other things. If they do interfere, their actions must be proportionate to the risk they think the protest poses.
Advice on Arrest
If you are arrested, the police will have to tell you exactly what you are charged with. If they simply stop you in the street then (with some exceptions, which we have a blog post explaining further) you are not detained, do not have to give them your details and can walk away.
If you are arrested, say ‘No Comment’ to Police Officers until you get legal advice from lawyers with knowledge of protest law. This includes during the arrest, during questioning, during ‘booking in’ talks and during any ‘casual chats’ with officers.
At the police station you may wish to give your name, address and date of birth to speed your release. This will allow you to go home for now and come back for questioning later. Do not feel the need to give any further details than this.
DO NOT ACCEPT A CAUTION WITHOUT ADVICE FROM A SOLICITOR! ACCEPTING A CAUTION CAN BE SEEN AS AN ADMISSION OF GUILT
Solicitors offering free 24 hour advice
The following solicitors are all firms who Black Protest Legal Support work with. If you are worried about being arrested it could be useful to record their numbers (or screenshot this page) so that you can contact them later if you need.
- ITN Solicitors: 0203 909 8100
- Hodge Jones & Allen: 0844 848 0222
- Commons Solicitors: 02038655403
- Bindmans: 02073055638
If you wish to contact us for support, see our Contact page or use the following contact details:
BLACK PROTEST LEGAL SUPPORT: firstname.lastname@example.org
PROTEST SUPPORT LINE: 07946 541 511