Campaigners swing into action over Human Rights Act
The Conservative election victory and its manifesto commitment to scrap the Human Rights Act in favour of a British Bill of Rights, has galvanised supporters of the act into action.
Liberty has launched a campaign with the twitter tag #SaveOurHRA. On its website it states: ‘We’ve already got a “British Bill of Rights” – it’s called our Human Rights Act. Help save it.’
The British Institute of Human Rights, which previously used the slogan and hashtag ‘I’m alright with human rights’, has now launched its ‘Protect what protects us all’ campaign, and urges supporters to tweet using #Together4HumanRights.
The website 38 Degrees is hosting a number of petitions on the issue, the largest of which seems to be the one initiated by Refugee Rights. An organisation calling itself Lawyers Against the Repeal of the Human Rights Act (LARHRA) has also been established, with membership open to students, lawyers and legal academics.
A number of organisations are turning to crowd-funding to raise money for HRA campaigning. Amnesty International plans to run an advertisement in The Times, paid for in this way and signed by as many people as possible, calling on Justice Secretary Michael Gove to scrap plans for its abolition.
#ActfortheAct is using crowdfunder.co.uk to raise money for a poster campaign on the transport system. The campaign, whose founders include Legal Action editor Fiona Bawdon and barristers Caoilfhionn Gallagher and Martha Spurrier, takes its inspiration from the widely praised ‘I am an immigrant’ campaign. Its supporters include Matt and Martina Baines, whose 17-year-old daughter killed herself after being held overnight in a police cell, and disability campaigner Jan Sutton.
Support for the act comes from across the political spectrum. Dominic Grieve, the Conservative MP and former Attorney-General, has publicly questioned what the government is trying to achieve by its abolition. David Davies, the prominent backbench Conservative MP, is also known to oppose plans to scrap it. With a majority of only 12, Conservative MPs like Davies and Grieve could rebel in an attempt to defeat any move to repeal the HRA.
#ActfortheAct was inspired by 'I am an immigrant’ poster campaign