The new Justice Secretary Liz Truss, and the third non-lawyer in a row to be appointed for the position, recently gave evidence to the House of Common’s Justice Committee pledging her government’s commitment to scrap the Human Rights Act 1998 (HRA) and replace it with a ‘British Bill of Rights’ (BBoR). However, many of the claims that critics of the HRA make fundamentally misunderstand how it works and why it is essential in a democratic society, and evade any serious discussion about what a British Bill of Rights would look like.
The European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) was put together in response to the European Holocaust and the Third Reich’s expansionist wars and was intended to prevent government excesses. It provided a basic set of rights for citizens, not based on their nationality, race, gender or religion, but simply by virtue of the fact that they…
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