Human Rights Act – we need to keep it!
The Human Rights Act has allowed people in Scotland to claim their rights and has improved countless lives since it came into force, an achievement that should be cherished and valued.
Unfortunately the UK Government has said that they will repeal the HRA and instead introduce a British Bill of Rights. The HRCS strongly believe that this would be a retrograde step.
The UK Government should keep the HRA because it has made everyday life better for many people across the UK.
- The HRA ensures dignity and a basic quality of life for disabled people – read Jan’s story here.
- The HRA enables elderly couples to live together and support each other -read Mr and Mrs Driscoll’s story here.
- The HRA ensured that a mother and children fleeing from domestic violence could stay together – read their story here.
- The HRA makes it safer to be gay. Today, being gay could get you arrested or even executed in at least 78 countries. Thanks in large part to the HRA, our rights to be treated as equals with equal access to protection regardless of gender, sexuality, race or age are protected by law.
- The HRA gives answers to bereaved families. The Hillsborough disaster of 1989, when 96 football fans lost their lives during the semi-final of the FA cup between Liverpool and Nottingham, will never be forgotten. The families have fought ever since for the truth to be told and justice to be done. Through Article 2 (the right to life) of the ECHR protected in the Human Rights Act – which places a duty on the state to investigate these kind of deaths properly and to do so with proper participation from the families of the bereaved – they were able to obtain a new inquest. In April 2016, the jury concluded that the 96 fans were in fact unlawfully killed.
These are just a few examples of why the HRA is such a valuable tool for all of us in protecting our human rights.