Brisbane libraries ban Extinction Rebellion protestors
Brisbane’s LNP City Council has banned Extinction Rebellion activists from using the city’s libraries to plan protests, reports the Brisbane Times.
Lord mayor Adrian Schrinner put forward an ‘urgency motion’ blocking protesters from booking council meeting facilities based on existing guidelines that specify that facilities cannot be used by groups encouraging illegal activity. Schrinner said the council will not accept bookings from Extinction Rebellion for libraries, parks, meeting halls or other facilities.
More than 100 Extinction Rebellion activists were arrested in Brisbane last week as part of worldwide rolling anti-climate change protests. Schrinner described the group as ‘extremist protesters’ who have been causing ‘continuous disruption’ in the city.
Councillor Jared Cassidy, Labor’s leader of the opposition in Brisbane’s council, claimed the motion is an attempt by the LNP to distract from questions around councillor spending. Greens councillor Jonathan Sri added that the motion would also make it difficult for any advocacy community group to meet in a council facility.
‘The broad problem here is that this council is setting themselves up as an arbiter of what people can meet about, what people can talk about, and what counts as an illegal activity,’ said Sri. ‘In practice what this will mean is that when community groups apply to book a meeting place, someone from the council is going to say, “Oh, what are you meeting about?” and then they can subject a decision about whether that group is advocating an illegal activity.’
Category: Library news