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What is a Legal Observer?

Lawyer Legal LO Observer
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What is a Legal Observer?

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The purpose of legal observing is to protect the civil liberties of political activists. Legal Observers do not intentionally become involved in the actions or intervene in any confrontations with police or others. Legal Observers strive to refrain from actions that could be construed as participating in a demonstration. Legal Observers can make the following contributions: • Legal Observers may deter police misconduct, • Legal Observers may testify about their observations, • Legal Observers may assist activists who are detained, arrested, or who need medical attention, by alerting the appropriate support teams associated with the demonstration. The desirable qualities of a legal observer include the ability to: • Remain calm in chaotic situations, • Pay attention to detail, • Balance risk and safety to maximize effectiveness, • Write unbiased descriptions of the scene or event, and • Focus on unconstitutional actions. To request legal observers for a demonstration, or for questions a

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A legal observer or LO is a neutral party who observes an event at which which misconduct on the part of police or government officials may become an issue. Most classically, legal observers are present at protests, demonstrations, and marches to look out for irregularities among the police, but legal observers may also monitor elections and other events. The goal of a legal observer is to protect the rights of ordinary citizens, ensuring that they are treated fairly and not pressured, discriminated against, or abused. The practice of using legal observers appears to have emerged in England in the 1930s, when workers protesting various tactics at factories realized the advantage of keeping legal observers on hand. These observers were typically lawyers or advanced legal students, and sometimes their presence alone was enough to prevent misconduct. Typically, a legal observer works on behalf of a non-partisan human rights organization. He or she may be a fully qualified lawyer, or a leg

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