Community News

New Santa Monica Noise Ordinance better supports free speech

People listen to speakers in the rain at a rally for International Women's Day in Los Angeles, California, U.S., March 5, 2017. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

 

Indigenous leaders participate in a protest march and rally in opposition to the Dakota Access and Keystone XL pipelines in front of the Trump International Hotel. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

SANTA MONICA- The Santa Monica City Council has passed a new noise ordinance that better allows for citizens to exercise their right to free speech.  The ordinance will now allow for non-commercial noisy protests to occur from 7 am to 10 pm on public property (as long as it is not close to a residential property, school, hospital or at 3rd St. Promenade, or Santa Monica Pier).

In the wake of a shaky political climate where protests are becoming citizen’s choice way to speak out, many felt that Santa Monica’s current laws did not fully support citizens right to free speech and limited their ability to protest.  This new amendment is being celebrated by many local activists and citizens.

However, the new ordinance does not come without opposition.  To name a few, the City manager, Chamber of Commerce, along with many in the restaurant industries have concerns about what this new amendment could mean for residents.  They took to speaking to the City Council to voice their concerns, fearing that this would detract from the city by possibly allowing citizens to be bombarded with loud sounds and protests when they go out in public for something as simple as a bite to eat.

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