Magazine of Socialist Action in Australia

Queensland: New anti-democratic G20 laws

Last year, the Queensland government passed the G20 (Safety and Security) Act 2013. The G20 is a forum of the 20 major capitalist economies and is meeting in Brisbane in November. This new law is clearly undemocratic and intended to squash the effectiveness of protests aimed at the G20 meetings.

By Matt Myers, Socialist Party

The legislation specifically states its objective is “to ensure the safety of members of the public from acts of civil disobedience”. The vagueness of the law means that it can be used against all forms of protest activity – even peaceful marches.

This law also uses the undefined term “disrupt” many times throughout. Any effective protest could be construed as ‘disruptive’ to somebody. Outrageously the law specifically bans certain types of signs and banners as well as communication devices that could be used “to disrupt any part of the G20 meeting”.

The Socialist Party strongly opposes anti-democratic laws of this nature. People have a right to protest against the exploitative policies of the G20. Side by side with opposing the pro big business policies of the G20 it is becoming increasingly necessary to link this struggle to the need to defend our democratic rights.