Weekly Action and News 22/07/2022
Manchester Amnesty Weekly Actions and News
Please do these actions and make a difference
1. Should the Human Rights Act 1998 be replaced with a Bill of Rights? Contribute your views to a parliamentary consultation.
On 22nd June this year, the government launched a bill to repeal and replace the Human Rights Act 1998 and replace it with a Bill of Rights. The British Institute of Human Rights (BIHR) have dubbed the new bill the “Rights Removal Bill” and argue that it will reduce the responsibility of government to uphold and protect our rights and will to make it harder for ordinary people to hold government to account. In short, this is an attack on our human rights. AIUK are campaigning to defend our human rights in the UK, and have brought this opportunity to act to our notice.
The Joint Committee on Human Rights is a parliamentary body with representation from both the House of Commons and the House of Lords; consisting of pro-human rights legislators, its members’ names are listed here. They have launched their own public consultation on the proposed Bill of Rights (link below)
The consultation consists of 7 questions and takes 2 minutes to complete online. If you want to do some reading around the issue, Amnesty and BIHR have excellent resources (links below). Please complete the consultation and share the link to it widely.
Further reading: https://www.bihr.org.uk/human-rights-act-reform
2. Take abortion OUT of the UK criminal law! Petition sponsored by Humanists.UK
You may be surprised to read that in recent years, 17 women who have had unexplained pregnancy losses were placed under criminal investigation for “illegal” abortions. The UK lags behind most of Europe in not fully decriminalising abortion and making it a legal healthcare right. The law which still criminalises women who are suspected of terminating a pregnancy without the sign-off of two doctors was passed at a time when women did not even have the vote, and has not been repealed.
Healthcare is not a crime. Please sign and share this petition today.
Individuals at risk – letter writing drop in – TOMORROW Saturday 23rd July, 2-4pm, Manchester Central Library (next to St Peter’s Square tram stop). We will be focussing on four urgent actions (Thailand, Egypt, Iran and Palestine) and writing to UAE authorities and embassies about Dr Mohammed AlRoken, who should have been released from prison last Sunday.
PLEASE DROP IN AND WRITE FOR RIGHTS!
- To help with our stall at the Big Ride for Palestine Big Gig on Saturday 30th July from 7pm at The Klondyke, Levenshulme, M19 2HQ. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org. The Israel Apartheid campaign is a big focus for us this year. So far we don’t have any volunteers to help Mike with this stall. We’d be really grateful if anyone has an hour to spare to help out. No experience necessary, just a willing pair of hands and an interest in human rights.
- To help plan and promote a guided walk around Manchester to raise funds for our group. The walk will be on 8th October. We are having an informal planning meeting on Monday 1st August at Central Manchester library café, 2.30pm. Do come, but if you’d like to be involved in the planning but can’t come to the meeting, contact Hazel email@example.com or Alison firstname.lastname@example.org.
- We have been approached by Bolton and Bury Amnesty Group to help with a collection to raise funds at Prestwich Tesco on 20th August. If we can help, proceeds with be shared with us. Please let email@example.com know if you can help.
- To help with our stall at the free music event by DeRanged Nights, 6th August, from 8pm Overdraught MCR, Levenshulme. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Manchester Amnesty Subgroups and other work
If you would like to join any of our subgroups, please contact the current convenors for joining details.
UAE – Kathryn Fletcher, email@example.com.
Anti-racism – Hazel Errey, firstname.lastname@example.org,
Refugees – Alison Wearden, email@example.com
HR in UK – Matthew Sherwood, firstname.lastname@example.org
Craftivism - Kathryn Fletcher email@example.com.
Other areas of work are led by:
Crisis and Tactical Afghanistan, Myanmar, Syria, Ukraine, Yemen Rebecca Shaw, firstname.lastname@example.org
Europe/ Turkey, Fatih Segmen, email@example.com
Israel's Apartheid Against Palestinians Mike Reed firstname.lastname@example.org
Individuals at Risk (quarterly letter writing) Anne Walker email@example.com
LGBTQ rights – Manchester Pride 2022 coordinator – Steve Lindsay firstname.lastname@example.org
Russian Federation - On July 15, 2022, the Komsololsk court acquitted feminist activist and artist Yulia Tsvetkova, who had disseminated positive images of the female body on vkontakte portal, of the charge of "spreading pornography", a crime carrying a sentence of up to three years in prison.
Netherlands - On 12 July 2022, the Council of State decided that Syrian asylum seekers could no longer be sent back to Denmark, as this state intends to repatriate them to Syria and the transfer between the two European states would constitute indirect rejection.
Greece - On 8 July 2022, ruling that the behaviour of the Greek security forces violated the right to life and constituted inhumane or degrading treatment, the European Court of Human Rights sentenced Greece to compensate survivors and relatives of the victims of a migrant boat, which sunk in 2014 resulting in the death of 11 people.
Slovenia - On 8 July 2022, the Constitutional Court ruled that the law according to which only two people of different gender can marry and same-sex couples cannot adopt children violates the right to non-discrimination enshrined in the Constitution.
Thank you for reading to the end of this weekly email! In response to feedback, I have shortened it this week. If you have any comments about the newsletter, please do let me have them. Alison.
Manchester Group of Amnesty International
Please contact me with items for our Weekly Action and News email, or with ideas for longer articles for the quarterly Manchester Amnesty Group Bulletin.