Misconceptions

There are a number of misconceptions about the Felony Trespass Bill

This bill just makes it so people who try to ruin equipment will not be allowed to
The sponsors of the bill over focus on the aspect of the bill that makes it a felony to damage property and continue to ignore the part of the bill that makes it a felony to trespass on land owned by an energy company

Environmental groups are the only ones who are about this
This bill has tremendous impacts that have concerned a broad array of groups, including those worried about civil rights, Indigenous rights, mass incarceration, and more. The Who’s Concerned tab has a long list of groups’ concerns.

With the stated exemptions in the bill for First Amendment activities, it actually makes it less likely someone would face a felony for protesting
This exception already clearly exists under the law. The First Amendment limits the ability of government to restrict free speech, but laws regulating the time, place, and manner of that speech are permissible so long as they are content neutral. The language of the purported free speech exception in the bill only applies when a person is acting in compliance with time, place, and manner restrictions, including the other laws pointed out in our letter that already make trespassing illegal. In other words, a people exercising their right to free speech and assembly in compliance with time, place, and manner restrictions are already covered under the First Amendment and merely stating that in the bill does not provide further protection.

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