We must not abandon our hard-won human rights

Local Liberal Democrats will take the fight to save the Human Rights Act to Bath's Guildhall tomorrow night (16 July 2015), with a motion to Council designed to highlight the importance of the Act to local residents.

key_LisaBrettHRA.JPGThis comes as the Conservative Government have confirmed their plans to scrap the Human Rights Act and are laying the groundwork to pull out of the European Convention on Human Rights.

The Liberal Democrats previously blocked plans to scrap the Human Rights Act in Government; now Liberal Democrats across the country are campaigning against this fresh attempt to ride roughshod over our freedoms and rights.

Councillor Lisa Brett will propose this motion on behalf of the Lib Dems. Lisa said:

“The Human Rights Act is one of the few laws that can enable ordinary citizens to hold the powerful to account.  It belongs to everyone. It protects every one of us – young or old, wealthy and poor, civilian or soldier.

“A good example is that of Gloucestershire-residents Richard and Beryl Driscoll. They lived together for more than 65 years until he was moved into a residential care home. He could not walk unaided and she was blind, so they relied on each other for mutual support. At first, the council said they could not be housed together in the same nursing home. However, a campaign that argued this treatment breached their human rights – specifically the right to a family life – forced the council to back down and they were reunited.

“The Human Rights Act puts a legal obligation on hospitals and social services to treat everyone with fairness, equality and dignity. Quite simply, the act is a triumph of British values. It is a cause for pride and celebration, not a pawn in a political game.

“It’s not for politicians to pick and choose when the rules apply or who deserves protection. Repealing it will mean less protection against state abuse or neglect, and weaken the rights of every single one of us.

“Conservatives love to point to a small number of high-profile cases in which Human Rights legislation has been used by criminals to avoid deportation for example. The truth is that such cases are rare and there are many more examples where ordinary people have been able to rely on Human Rights legislation in the UK courts to ensure they are treated fairly by public authorities.

“The Human Rights Act is directly relevant and useful to local residents and I urge B&NES residents to back our campaign.”

Sign the BathNES Lib Dems' petition to save the Human Rights Act.

Read the motion on the B&NES Council website.

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