By Louis Chandor, News Reporter
A crowd of approximately 30 protestors gathered at Bristol's College Green on Friday 10 December to protest the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill.
As part of the groups’ demonstration a vigil was held between 3 to 7pm. Friday’s peace vigil fell on International Human Rights Day. Illuminated by candlelight and the crowds spirit, a variety of speeches and songs were performed in disapproval of the PCSC bill.
The PCSC bill is currently in the report stage in Parliament and had its third reading in the House of Lords last week. The bill was the subject of widespread protests earlier this year.
A medium sized crowd has gathered on College Green to protest the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill which is in its third reading at Parliament this week. They’re also commemorating international #HumanRightsDay #Bristol #CollegeGreen @EpigramPaper pic.twitter.com/ZE9zFJwL0M— Joseph Marshall (@joe_marshall99) December 10, 2021
The government has said that the bill ‘will allow the police to take a more proactive approach in managing highly disruptive protests causing serious disruption to the public’. Opponents of the bill cite that under the ‘draconian’ plans, police will be handed sweeping new powers.
Epigram spoke to the organiser of the protest organisation named the Bristol Peace Vigil, at Friday’s demonstration.
The organiser of the event commented that the protest group has met at College Green every Saturday since 1 May 2021 to protest the PCSC bill.
The organisation said that they had assembled the crowd with the mindset of creating something ‘magical’ to combat feelings of ‘disempowerment’ and ‘bring people together’. This was done through a variety of speakers, most of which were stated to have been performed spontaneously.
The goal of the organisation was described as wanting to protest the upcoming PCSC Bill, create an environment where people could speak their mind and to raise awareness to encourage people to help the organisation’s efforts.
The organiser of the event stressed that they ‘want to make contact with students studying law’ to help the organisation read through and decipher the PCSC Bill as it is over 300 pages long.
Featured image: Epigram / Louis Chandor
More information about the Bristol Peace Vigil can be found here.