Human Rights in the Headlines (and some that aren’t)
It doesn’t seem possible that we’re a quarter of the way through 2016 already – take that Mayan prophecy!
As such, and with Parliament and the courts in recess, it’s as good a time as any for a special April 1 recap of some of the challenges ahead.
The Home Secretary has tabled an amendment to the Investigatory Powers Bill requiring the police to travel only by rollerblade from now on, in homage to Theresa May’s favourite film – 1995’s Hackers.
Lancaster City Council has passed a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) making it a criminal offence to do anything annoying. Presumably there’s been a gamma radiation leak in the city centre and they’re just playing it safe.
Tough on the causes of crime
A leaked Home Office document has revealed new plans to tackle crime and disorder. Constituencies containing those with ‘extreme views’ will be required to offer one male and one female each as annual tributes to the government. Tributes will then fight to the death to prove their allegiance to British values.
To protect and to serve
Hot on the heels of policing cuts and an Immigration Bill which sows suspicion and division within our communities, the Policing and Crime Bill is set to give civilians the opportunity to volunteer for certain police powers. Willing recruits will be bitten by a radioactive copper, which is viewed as a safer alternative to the Robocop programme.
The truth is even scarier
With the current government agenda, you’d be forgiven for struggling to separate fact from fiction this April Fools’ Day. But while the examples above aren’t all strictly true, the truth is no less surreal.
Once the EU referendum has been decided this Government intends to launch an all-out PR offensive against our Human Rights Act and take away basic rights and protections for ordinary people.
The Policing and Crime Bill is set to bestow new powers on police to stop ships – including those transporting asylum seekers in dire need of protection – and divert them to anywhere else in the world.
And Government has recently started forcing landlords to check nationality documents before renting to tenants despite the widespread consensus that this already has and shall lead to racial discrimination and homelessness for the most vulnerable in society.
Liberty will continue to fight on these fronts and do everything in its power to protect and preserve our hard fought-for rights in the months ahead.