Alex Tyrrell issued the following statement on November 13, 2019
The Mayor of Montreal has just announced that the city will abolish their highly controversial anti-protest by-law known as P-6.
During the 2012 Quebec Student Movement By-law P-6 was used to crack down on peaceful protesters. Police literally surrounded and “kettled” hundreds of us at a time. Between 2012 and 2015 Montreal police arrested over 4000 protestors in 38 mass arrests. This triggered 17 class action lawsuits against the city for violating the constitutional rights and freedoms of people such as myself.
Being arrested under these unconstitutional anti-protest by laws was an experience I will never forget. Although I was not injured in the process others were brutalized by the police. I saw it with my own eyes. After the arrests they brought us to court day after day. On trial we were literally dozens (sometime hundreds) of co-defendants. During one of the trials I personally cross-examined the police commander who had been presented as the Crown’s main witness despite the fact that he was not even present when the arrests occurred!
At the time, the City of Montreal and the Government of Quebec were trying to stamp out our protest movement. To a large degree they succeeded. One of the most unfair things about our legal system is that governments can pass laws they know to be unconstitutional knowing that they will be able to enforce them until the courts rule otherwise.
The charges against me were municipal infractions that carried a fine of $634 each. Following various rulings by the courts that found the law unconstitutional all of the charges were dropped, however, I was never compensated for my time, discomfort or for violations of my fundamental democratic rights.
Leader of the Green Party of Quebec