Human Rights Incorporation in Scotland

In March 2021, the Scottish Parliament unanimously passed the UNCRC (Incorporation) (Scotland) Bill, putting the children’s rights convention directly into Scots law.

The Scottish Government has now committed to introducing a new Human Rights Bill for Scotland. This Bill will incorporate 4 more major United Nations human rights treaties. These treaties are:

The Bill will also include the right to a healthy environment, as well as rights for older people and LGBTi people.

What’s happening now?

  • We expect a Scottish Government consultation on what should be in the Bill early this year.
  • The Government has committed to passing the Bill by May 2025.
  • A Human Rights Bill Governance and Engagement Advisory Board has been set up by the Government. This meets approx. every 2 months to be a sounding board and provide advice to the team who are writing the Bill. The Consortium is a member of this Board. Details of all the members and minutes of meetings are available here.
  • There is also an Executive Board to advise on the Human Rights Bill. Read who is on this and minutes of meetings here.
  • The Consortium is facilitating the Scottish Government’s Lived Experience Board, which brings together people with a wide variety of experiences of rights at risk to advise the government on the creation of the Bill.
  • The Cabinet Secretary Shona Robison MSP gave an update on next steps to develop the Bill at a Consortium event in October 2021. You can read her speech here.

Incorporation of International Human Rights Briefing Series

Written By Prof Nicole Busby and Dr Kasey McCall-Smith, these briefings give a helpful outline of content of treaties and rights:

About incorporation

Incorporating Human Rights in Scotland: EasyRead Resources

The National Taskforce for Human Rights Leadership

Reports, Briefings and Blogs


Quick International Case Studies

Academic Papers



All Our Rights in Law

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