Unions Protecting Free Speech in the Nation's Capitol  

Live in DC and want to keep Free Speech?

Well, you have your chance today.

The Noise bill is up for a vote on Tuesday. The Noise bill is primarily aimed at the H street corridor where a guy “preaching” on a soap box with an amplifier basically tells everyone that they’re sinners and they’re all going to hell. While visiting a friend, I overheard it. He’s very annoying, however, he’s in one small part of the city. And this noise ordinance would affect all of us, including the many times that amplifiers are used for protests from union protests to demonstrations on behalf of genocide victims like those in Darfur or when protestors come here to tell the World Bank that their policies suck…I think you get the picture here.

DCLabor is supporting a proposed amendment to the measure and is requesting that DC residents put pressure on a couple of key council members. Unfortunately, as much as I like both of them, they aren’t good on issues relating to workers rights as evidenced in their Sick leave votes earlier this year. This is an opportunity for both of them to end up on the right side of the issue.

So, if you’re a DC resident (hell, if you aren’t still do it), take a minute and let these council members know how you feel about stripping all of us of our right to free speech.

Councilmembers Kwame Brown and Yvette Alexander voted for the legislation even though they had voiced their support for a compromise amendment – supported by labor and civil liberties groups – prior to the vote. The compromise amendment – sponsored by Jack Evans – would protect free speech and guarantee quiet neighborhoods.

Send Councilmembers Brown and Alexander the letter below to tell them to stick to their initial commitment to support free speech and reintroduce and vote for the compromise amendment at the second vote on the bill this Tuesday.

You can send them your own note by following the link or copying it into your browser.


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