Campaigners from Fans Against Criminalisation (FAC) have released an hour-long video detailing the story of the contentious Offensive Behaviour Act… and it’s a must watch for Scottish football fans.
The OBFA was passed in 2012 following the heated ‘Shame Game’ between Old Firm rivals Celtic and Rangers at Park Head, a year earlier.
The legislation was brought in to address sectarianism and other “offensive behaviour” in and around football matches, however, it has faced substantial criticism over the last five years from fans, legal experts and football clubs.
FAC’s video details how the Act “presents a broader danger to freedom of speech and freedom of expression”, while providing several pieces of evidence showing the Bill allows the authorities to harass football fans at matches:
Guilty: The Story of the Offensive Behaviour Act is now available to watch online. Well worth an hour of your time, and please help get this shared far and wide to let people know about the damage done by this illiberal legislation. https://t.co/8qr4kLqFQF
— FAC (@FACKilltheBill) December 15, 2017
Kelly said, “I think looking at the Offensive Behaviour in Football Act, it’s one of the most illiberal pieces of legislation that has ever been produced by the Scottish Parliament.
“It’s worth remembering that it was railroaded through by the SNP Government… against the will of all opposition parties in 2011.
“It targets football fans, it’s caused a lot of confusion amongst the judiciary… and it’s also caused huge friction between fans and police, so it’s not in any way been a success.”
It is being reported that the SNP will eventually signal a willingness to significantly alter the legislation, stopping short of a full repeal.