The Govt have published their response to the consultation on Human Rights Act. The responsible minister is Dominic Raab, for whom it has been a long term aim to weaken people’s access to legal remediation, well for anything actually. Raab wrote, The Assault on Liberty, reviewed in the independent and the Guardian. In this case, the target human rights and their 1st target is the right to a private and family life, arguing that honouring this right makes deporting people harder. There’s another answer,

 While developing the GMB London Region’s evidence to the consultation, I was asked to focus the needs and rights of GMB members as trade unionists and concluded that too much attention was being placed on the relationship between the various institutions and insufficient on what might occur if a sense of impunity were developed in the administrative organs of the State. In the preface, to the evidence, it was stated that,

My concern is that, as a result of the framing of the consultation, too much attention will be applied to the relationship between the government, parliament, the UK Supreme court and the Strasbourg Court, and insufficient attention to the effective transfer of power to Ministers, Councillors and Officials who may behave poorly and with impunity should they feel less likely to have to answer to the UK or Strasbourg courts.

Dave Levy – On this blog

The fears, expressed by the Civil Liberty organisations have all come to pass, a review of the government’s arguments for proceeding show that this is about reducing the burden on government of complying with human rights law and some cases of permitting government actions particularly within the administration of justice that would otherwise be illegal. It’s a further development of the authoritarianism central to this government’s politics. The UK’s record at the European Court is good, with only two adverse rulings in the last report, both related to the administration of justice. This trend was notified by the Law Society to the United Nations for that organisation’s quinquennial periodic review, which it conducts for all member states.

Prof Mark Elliot has published a response to the Bill and its announcement. I found this explanation very simple in a good way and very direct. If you’re interested you should read it and as Jo Maughan says,

Prof Eliot concludes,  

From all of this, two key conclusions follow. First, contrary to the assertion of the Justice Secretary, the Bill certainly does not enhance human rights protection. The very most that can be said for it is that it preserves human rights protection in the sense that it bites upon the same catalogue of rights as the HRA. Second, however, any suggestion that the Bill maintains the same level of protection as the HRA is ultimately doomed to failure because, for reasons hinted at above and developed below, the Bill significantly diminishes the level and forms of domestic protection afforded to the Convention rights.

prof Mark Elliot – Public Law for Everyone


The current UK Government is increasingly showing itself to be allergic to scrutiny. When Parliament stood up to it in relation to Brexit, the Government unlawfully attempted to prorogue, or suspend, Parliament, in flagrant breach of fundamental constitutional principle. When the Supreme Court said as much, the Government bridled and made noises about limiting the courts’ powers of judicial review. When the last-but-one Independent Adviser on Ministerial Interests reached an inconvenient conclusion (namely, that the Home Secretary had breached the Ministerial Code by bullying officials), the Prime Minister rejected it, prompting the Adviser’s resignation. When the Prime Minister was found to have breached the criminal law, he rewrote the Ministerial Code, removing references to integrity and honesty. And when, just last week, the ECtHR intervened in relation to the Rwanda deportations, the Government apparently responded by introducing legislation, in the form of clause 24 of the current Bill, ordering British courts to ignore such interventions. The pattern, then, is undeniable: the Government dislikes scrutiny and views accountability mechanisms as threats that should be neutralised or at least marginalised.

prof Mark Elliot – Public Law for Everyone

A detailed statement on the image credit is on the image page. Having conducted a reasonable search I believe it to be an image without copyright.

Human rights and the ECHR
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