Freedom Not Fear 2012 – Sydney

This weekend, Saturday September 15, activists will gather in Sydney’s Hyde Park to protest under the banner of the international ‘Freedom Not Fear’ movement[1]. They join with protesters across Europe demanding an end to the surveillance mania.

“As we commemorate the eleventh anniversary of the despicable 9/11 attacks, we also reflect on the climate of fear that has been exploited and allowed governments, law enforcement and intelligence agencies to pass controversial, unnecessary and unbalanced laws that erode privacy and other fundamental freedoms,” said David W. Campbell, President of Pirate Party Australia.

The Australian Government has proposed sweeping legislative changes with the claim of protecting national security. These changes, if accepted, represent the greatest erosion of privacy we have seen in Australia.

“We invite Sydneysiders to join us at midday this Saturday, September 15, to protest proposals like those of the National Security Inquiry. We ask them to join us in re-affirming the values of a free and open society, demanding freedom, not fear,” continued Mr Campbell.

In this weekend’s event, representatives and individuals from different political parties, activist and advocacy groups and trade unions will gather to share information, network and protest. Activists from the “Cryptoparty”[2] grassroots movement (emerged less than a month ago) will speak about the impetus for their events and the importance of privacy, and will be available to answer questions and assist people with tools to ensure their communications are private.

An open air discussion panel will follow the speeches, with activists discussing the issues and how the National Security Inquiry proposals will affect their work as well as the the implications for all Australians.

We encourage everyone to sign the petition initiated by Pirate Party Australia[3] that objects to mandatory data retention and asks that the Senate respects people’s fundamental freedoms and rights which will be tendered to the Senate by Senator Scott Ludlam of the Greens.

Supporting the event this year in Sydney is the civil liberties and digital freedoms NGO Electronic Frontiers Australia[4], local activist and advocacy group the Support Assange and Wikileaks Coalition[5], VPN service provider Privacy.IO[6], the Fire Brigade Employees Union[7], Pirate Party Australia[8] and the Australian Greens[9].