This guide was written through the collaboration of Green and Black Cross (GBC) and the Activist Court Aid Brigade (ACAB). There has been much public discussion about the Police Crime Sentencing and Courts Act (herein: the PCSC Act). We have produced this guide in the spirit of mutual aid to distribute practical and simple English information about what the Act says, how it might work, and what to do about it. Please note that this guide only covers the parts of the PCSC Act that we believe are likely to be relevant in protest situations, it does not cover everything the Act changes.
The law changes often; the reforms in this Act may be more notable than usual, but it does not, as many have claimed, make ‘all protest illegal’ nor does it mean you’ll be imprisoned for 10 years for using a megaphone on a march or sharing a social media post. The main thing is to not panic and to stick to practical info like the 5 Key Messages. If you do get arrested or charged, reach out to us and we’ll do our best to support you through the process and put you in touch with a good solicitor. Importantly, this booklet is not an introduction to knowing your rights. You can find out the key messages to know when going on a protest and read our know your rights booklet to gain a fuller understanding. This guide should be read as a supplement or update to our existing guidance.
As always, if you have any questions, or want more specific information, call the Protest Support Line (07946 541 511)