Human rights billboards deemed ‘too political’

Man holding cardboard paper with HUMAN RIGHTS title

Human rights organisation Amnesty International has had billboard adverts defending the UK Human Rights Act pulled from railways stations after Network Rail deemed the issue ‘political’.

Network Rail, which is an arms-length company owned by the UK Government, said the posters were disqualified because they encouraged people to sign a petition.

Stations due to carry the advert this morning include Glasgow Central and Edinburgh Waverley, as well as stations in Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham and London’s Waterloo and Victoria stations.

The poster declares the UK Human Rights Act has helped the Hillsborough families, forge peace in Northern Ireland and Celia Peachy, whose mother was murdered by her violent ex-partner. It represents a protest against UK Government plans to replace the Act with a British Bill of Rights.

Amnesty’s UK director Kate Allen said the charity was disappointed. “We simply don’t accept that basic human rights are ever a political issue,” she said.

“The irony is that human rights cross party-political lines and so do failures, cover-ups and abuses. Successive governments managed to let down the Hillsborough families, and their story demonstrates precisely why we need enduring human rights protections which aren’t redrafted by the government of the day, on a political whim.”

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