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Offences Relating To Behaviour And Dress In Public Places

Volume 114: debated on Wednesday 8 April 1987

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I beg to move amendment No.14, in page 5, leave out lines 13 to 15 and insert—

"Display of support in public for a proscribed organisation.

`9 — (1) The following section shall be substitued for section 25 of the 1978 Act—

25. Any person who in a public place—

  • (a) wears any item of dress; or
  • (b) wears, carries or displays any article,
  • in such a way or in such circumstances as to arouse reasonable apprehension that he is a member or supporter of a proscribed organisation, shall be liable—

  • (i) on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six moths or to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum, or both;
  • (ii) on conviction on indictment to imprisonment for a term not exceeding one year or to a fine, or both.".'.
  • Amendment No. 14 redefines the offence under section 25 of the 1978 Act so that it is now identical to the equivalent offence in Great Britain under section 2(1) of the Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act 1976.

    In Committee, the hon. Member for Newry and Armagh (Mr. Mallon) questioned how the original form of the provision, which refers to a person behaving in such a way as to arouse reasonable apprehension that he is a supporter of a proscribed organisation, might be interpreted. The amendment narrows the offence to certain types of behaviour — wearing, carrying or displaying any article that is likely to arouse such apprehension -and so removes some areas of doubt.

    Amendment No. 15 is purely consequential.

    Amendment agreed to.

    Amendment made: No. 15, in page 5, line 16, leave out 'that section and in'.