Scotland’s notorious anti-football fan, and anti-free speech law, the Offensive Behaviour Act, “is in injury time” and heading for repeal, according to James Kelly MSP, the Labour parliamentarian who has been holding a public consolation on the issue.
He says his Bill to repeal the act will go before the Parliament within weeks.
Kelly was speaking at a fringe meeting at Labour’s Scottish conference in Perth earlier today, where he told the audience that it was time to put the law away.
The SNP now lacks the working majority to block a repeal, but only by a single vote.
If one MSP who is in favour of repeal decides not to show, or can’t, then this thing stays. This is the last chance we will get to lobbying and make sure this particular piece of legislation is gone from the statute books. This will be the culmination of a lot of hard work from a lot of dedicated people, and enormous credit must go to every single one of them, particularly the team at Fans Against Criminalisation, who have been tireless in this effort.
One more effort, for them, and for the people who’ve suffered due to this horrendous law, guys.
One last email campaign to your local MSP to get it stopped.
James Kelly MSP deserves great credit for taking this forward as long as he has.
Some say this is a bill that tackles sectarianism; it does nothing of the sort. It criminalises free speech and gets into trouble people who would never be in the criminal justice system under any other circumstances. It has given records to a lot of folk who don’t deserve them.
This law has been condemned right across the political spectrum; it is despised on the left, on the right and from centrists everywhere.
Academics, even legal professionals, have lined up to dismiss it as a scandal and an affront to civil liberties.
This is the last stand.
Let’s kill the Bill.