Media Release – 18 March 2014

Humanists oppose the ‘Move On’ Bill

The Summary Offences and Sentencing Amendment Bill 2013, dubbed the ‘Move On’ Bill, reportedly passed through the Victorian Upper House on 12 March 2014. The new law curtails human rights, and potentially disempowers people and communities who might seek to exercise their right to peaceful protest.

Humanists oppose this Bill and express our profound disappointment that some Victorian Parliamentarians have chosen to vote against the human rights of their constituents.

Victorian Humanists support the rights to free speech, association and assembly. We also consider dissent and protest as being fundamental facets of a healthy, functioning democracy, and we ask why the Victorian government would seek to restrict such activities.

Humanists understand that existing laws already adequately cover all protest scenarios and unlawful conduct. We concur with other organisations and individuals who see the new law as being unnecessary.

Humanists endorse the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which Australia signed over 60 years ago. We view the ‘Move On’ Bill as infringing these rights and urge the Government to reconsider its introduction in this State.

Contact Stephen Stuart, Secretary, Humanist Society of Victoria Inc. at victorianhumanist@gmail.com