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Move On Laws

Move On Laws

24 February 2015

Joint Statement from Jewish Community Council of Victoria President Jennifer Huppert and Zionist Council of Victoria President Sam Tatarka regarding the proposed repeal of recently introduced ‘move-on’ laws.

President of the Jewish Community Council of Victoria, Jennifer Huppert and President of the Zionist Council of Victoria Sam Tatarka met with Victorian Attorney General Martin Pakula last week to discuss Jewish community concerns at the proposed repeal of the move on laws introduced by the previous Coalition government.

The Government's proposed amendments to the move on powers contained in the Summary Offences Act will deprive police of the power to direct people to move on even if they have reasonable grounds to suspect that there is or is likely to be a breach of the peace, or danger to the safety of any other person or if the behaviour is likely to cause injury to a person, damage to property or is otherwise a risk to public safety so long as the persons concerned are demonstrating or protesting about a particular issue.

The Attorney General sought to reassure the community of his strong opposition to the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign, which he said "has no role in a respectful and harmonious multicultural Victoria."  Mr Pakula also said that "the Premier and his ministerial and caucus colleagues share this view and always have".

"Given the Government's stated opposition to BDS the proposed amendments represent a significant retrograde step in the protection of businesses and individuals from the impact of those who seek to boycott or blockade them for their connection to Israel".  said Mr Tatarka and Ms Huppert following the meeting.  "We note Mr Pakula's assurance that the Government will continue to monitor the situation to ensure that there are no gaps in the law to protect individuals and businesses from unlawful or violent protests.  We trust that if there is a repetition of the violence, abuse and intimidation that marked the campaign against Max Brenner and other retailers of Israeli products the Government will not hesitate to reinstate appropriate protections that the Jewish community in particular and the community in general is entitled to expect as they go about their daily business"



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