ACLU of Illinois

Know Your Rights: Freedom of expression in Chicago
March 15, 2012

When do I need a permit? What if I cannot afford the cost of the permit?

You’ll need a permit for a parade through the streets or a large protest in one of the City’s iconic plazas or parks, unless the gathering is a response to breaking news. Permit and other fees cannot be so excessive that they stifle speech. For example, if a group is too poor to purchase insurance, or too controversial to obtain insurance after reasonable efforts, the City must make exceptions from its ordinary rule requiring certain protests to have insurance.

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