Briefing - Coronavirus (Extension and Expiry) (Scotland) Bill
As the Scottish Parliament prepares to debate all three stages of a new Coronavirus Bill just 3 days after its introduction, Amnesty has briefed MSPs.
The Coronavirus (Extension and Expiry) (Scotland) Bill amends prior Coronavirus acts to extend and expire a range of emergency provisions. Some higher profile restrictions such as those on mass gatherings and international travel are not covered by the Bill but a range of areas with the potential for significant human rights impact are, including the criminal justice system and housing.
Amnesty has used this opportunity to:
- Raise concerns about the extremely short time period allowed for scrutiny of this bill, and the lack of formal consultation
Urge the Scottish Government to amend the bill to renistate the ban on eviction of tenants in the social and private rented sector and highlight to MSPs that forced evictions represent the violation of a number of human rights including the right to adequate housing, and particularly in the context of a public health emergency – potentially the rights to life, to security of person, to health, to protection of the home and family and to freedom from cruel and inhuman treatment.
Raise concerns about proposals to reduce reporting duties into the number of deaths in care homes.
Ask the Scottish Government to make public an assessment of whether international standards, particularly those contained in the ICCPR, ECHR and UNCRC are being met in Scotland’s prisons folowing findings from Howard League Scotland of increasing numbers of people held on remand.
Reiterate our call for a Public Inquiry into Coronavirus in Scotland to be urgently established.
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Our blogs are written by Amnesty International staff, volunteers and other interested individuals, to encourage debate around human rights issues. They do not necessarily represent the views of Amnesty International.