First Amendment Concepts for Protests in Cities

Information Memo

Published: May 24, 2024

First Amendment Concepts for Protests in Cities
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This content conveys general information. Do not use it as a substitute for legal advice. Any attorney general opinions cited are available from the League’s Research staff.

Learn legal concepts related to First Amendment free speech rights in the U.S. and state of Minnesota Constitutions and how cities balance them with public safety concerns. Read about speech that is not protected, ways to deal with unpopular ideas and how others may react to them. Understand regulations that are content-neutral (addressing time, place and manner, but not based on content). Describes how cities may choose to regulate protests, marches, rallies and other demonstrations in city parks or streets by ordinance to guard public safety against hecklers, violence and threats.