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March on Washington

You have civil rights as peaceful demonstrators despite what the politicians or police tell you. The U.S. and California Constitutions specifically protect your right to Free Speech and Free Assembly. You are protected particularly if you are marching on public sidewalks. You generally have a right to protest in public areas but you may be required to get a permit for a large gathering. As long as your speech is not inciting violence or law-breaking, you have the right to free speech regardless of how that impacts listeners.

If you are protesting and the police stop you, respectfully ask them “Are you detaining me?” or “Am I free to go?” If the police are not detaining you, you can refuse to provide a license or identification and you can refuse to answer their questions. In California, you have the right to record or video police as long as you (1) do so openly and (2) don’t obstruct legitimate law enforcement activities. If you are being detained, you have a right to remain silent and a right to counsel. Please be clear to police: “I am invoking my 5th Amendment right to remain silent and my right to counsel.” Finally, when protesting, disable your touch/face ID and if asked, you do not have to give the police your password to your phone. Keep fighting the good fight and if you need help, please call the California Civil Rights Law Group at (415)453-4740.