The anti-protest bill — HB 1 Combating Public Disorder — will be debated and voted on the Senate floor Wednesday April 14th. If it passes, goes to the Governor for his signature. So, we ask you to contact your individual Senator before Wednesday to VOTE NO on this anti-democracy bill.
If this bill passes, it will be sent directly to the Governor. Our last move is to petition the Governor to veto the bill. Being that this bill is considered his “signature” bill, we will have to move fast, as he is ready to sign it.
Call Sen. Albritton and Gruters today and then on Wednesday (when the bill most likely goes to the Governor for signature) call the Governor. We must not go down silently!
District 26: Senator Ben Albritton 850-487-5026 [email protected]
District 23: Senator Joe Gruters 850-487-5023 [email protected]
Governor Ron DeSantis 850-717-9337 [email protected]
- This bill was initially conceptualized by Gov. DeSantis as a backlash to Black Lives Matter (BLM) protests during the summer, even though these protests remained mostly peaceful, especially in Florida.
- Violent behavior during public protests is already illegal under Florida law, but HB 1 would go beyond and seek to:
- Expand penalties against anyone affiliated with a protest that becomes “disorderly;”
- Mandate that anyone arrested at a protest would be detained until their first court appearance;
- Protect Confederate monuments;
- Prevent local community decisions from modifying law enforcement activities; and
- Provide protections for people who drive into a peaceful demonstration and “accidentally” run over a protester obstructing a public roadway.
According to the most recent Florida House Staff Analysis, this bill may have a negative fiscal impact on the Florida Department of Corrections and local governments due to:
- The creation of new felony offenses relating to public disorder that will require more prison beds, and
- The creation of new misdemeanor offenses that will require more jail beds for those arrested and held over until their first appearance hearings.
Jean Siebenaler & Laurie Ulrop
DWCF Legislative Chair and Charlotte Dems Legislative Liaison, respectively