The new Conservative government has made a key plank of its work withdrawing from The Human Rights Act.
This Act effectively incorporates the European Convention on Human Rights, which was drafted by British lawyers and lauded by Churchill, into British law.
It enshrines a system of protecting citizens against the excesses of government and is common to nearly all citizens in Europe (except in Belarus).
The Conservatives seem to have forgotten our proud historic involvement and are prepared to put all the rights we hold so dear at risk – the fundamental rights that protect us all from the state – trashing the legacy of Churchill in the process.
The Rights at risk include preventing the state from spying on us, protecting soldiers on duty, protecting those in care and defending domestic violence and rape victims.
What’s more, it is ironic then that this year we will celebrate the 800th birthday of the Magna Carta, the precursor to so many further conventions that protect our human rights.
So I am delighted the two candidates for the leadership of the Liberal Democrats have come together to launch the campaign to stop the Tories from abolishing the Human Rights Act.
The Liberal Democrats fought hard in government to protect the Human Rights Act and we will do so from outside government too.
I’m proud to be a citizen of Britain which has the long tradition of holding up to the rest of the world our human rights record. Why would we take a giant leap back into the dark ages and throw all of this away, or at the very least try to reinvent an unbroken wheel?
Catherine Bearder MEP
Park End Street
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