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Dec 17th, 2013

Brighton Council stands against the gagging law!

By India Thorogood

38 Degrees members and Caroline Lucas MP pose outside Brighton Town Hall

Great News! Last Thursday Brighton and Hove became the first place in the country to formally oppose the gagging law.

Last week Brighton and Hove councillors debated a motion against the gagging law. 38 Degrees members sent over 1600 emails to councillors asking them to vote against the law and it definitely had an effect! Councillors from all parties brought up the number of emails they’d received.

One councillor said he’d had more emails about the gagging law than any other issue! Of the 54 councillors in Brighton and Hove 34 decided to speak out against this threat to democracy and the motion passed.

In the lead up to January’s massive public meeting on the gagging law, news like this is really important. Mike Weatherley, the MP for Hove, has still not said he’s coming. And Simon Kirby, Brighton Kemptown MP, has put the date in his diary, but hasn’t 100% confirmed yet. The more the gagging law is on the local political agenda, the more pressure these MPs will be under to come along and join in the debate.

Make sure you’ve saved the date for the public meeting in your diary! It’s on Thursday 9th January, and it looks like it’s going to be an amazing event.

If you haven’t done so already you can RSVP on facebook here. Or in the comments section of the blog here.

Thursday’s vote was truly amazing. Councillors don’t often like to get involved in Westminster policies, so the fact that this motion was voted on – and passed – shows how controversial the gagging law is.

And this could spark a movement in councils across the UK. Brighton and Hove was the first council to take a stand and publicly oppose the gagging law, but it could inspire other councils to do the same thing!

Brighton Council Chamber

Photo from a member who watched the vote as it happened

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