Defend the right to dissent!

Press conference: Defend the right to dissent in support of protest megaphone use

Join the coalition-based campaign to push back against the recent ramp up in state repression by Ottawa Bylaw Enforcement and the Ottawa Police Service against community organizers.

Bylaw, which enforces local ordinances related to noise at the municipal level, has begun aggressively suppressing free speech in Ottawa by abusing noise Bylaw 2017-255. They have handed out a whopping 48 fines related to protests amounting to costs of over $23,000+ on Ottawa community members. These tactics have been used to target Trans Health Defense Rallies, Palestine rallies, Striking PSAC workers and climate organizers. They have culminated in a recent arrest of NCR Regional President Alex Silas.

Take action!

  1. Join the coalition and support the campaign! Individuals and unions please fill out this google form.
  2. Attend the press conference: Tuesday, March 26 at 9 a.m., Ottawa City Hall
  3. Learn more and get involved!

The current Bylaw approach, if unchallenged, poses a massive threat to Charter protected freedom of expression, and strike action in Ottawa. Megaphones and speakers are critical tools for communicating to large crowds and should never be restricted for picketers.

City Council has the power to make it clear that protests, rallies, and pickets are exempt from Bylaws designed for permitted events.

Key demands on City Council:

  1. Put forward a motion to amend Bylaw 2017-255 to exempt protests and pickets from Bylaw 2017-255. Importantly, there should be no decibel limit on dissent.
  2. Make a recommendation to the Justice of the Peace that these unjust fines be waived immediately.

We need your help – it will take all of us united for the City Council to feel the heat.