MPs call for UK Bill of Rights
As reported by the BBC, Westminster's Joint Committee on Human Rights has published the report of its year-long inquiry into proposals for a UK Bill of Rights and has come out firmly in support of the idea.
So far I have only speed read the report, but it looks pretty good. It outlines a whole series of areas which could be better protected through the Bill and, as noted by Tom Griffin at OurKingdom, it makes recommendations for the inclusion of economic and social rights. International experience is briefly examined and a number of models are put forward for consideration.
At a time when some fundamental human rights are under attack in the UK by the country's government and when opposition MPs regularly disparage the Human Rights Act, the report should be welcomed as a powerful, cross-party endorsement of the importance of a solid human rights framework within the constitution of a modern country.
Of course, the 'for' and 'against 'arguments, and the debate about the scope of the content and the degree of enforceability or justiciability are all pretty famiiar territory to those of us in Northern Ireland who have been engaged in the campaign for a NI Bill of Rights for a decade or more. Whatever about the likely progress of and (surely, now enhanced) prospects for a UK Bill of Rights, the campaign for a strong NI Bill goes on.
I hope to return to this topic when I have had time to properly examine the JCHR report, but for now, the full report is available here and Committee chairperson, Andrew Dismore MP, makes the case for the Bill here.
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