Sadiq Khan MP, Labour’s Shadow Justice Secretary, commenting ahead of tomorrow’s expected publication of the report by the Commission on a Bill of Rights, said:
“The Commission on a Bill of Rights was always a political fudge. It’s not a cross-party committee; Labour was never asked our views on this or even asked to nominate representatives. The Commission was designed simply to paper over the divisions within the Tory-led Government. Given the rift within the Government, it’s unlikely there’ll be any changes to the current law before the next election. Instead, the Tories will be using the findings for their next manifesto – and at a cost of millions of pounds, that must be the most expensive piece of manifesto authorship in history, all courtesy of the taxpayer.
“After all, the Human Rights Act is our Bill of Rights, and already provides legal protection against torture and slavery, and enshrines in law the right to liberty, to open and fair justice and to protest. It upholds freedom of speech, the right to a private life and to religious freedoms. The Tories aim is to abolish all of these rights and replace with a new set. The Tories need to admit which rights they think are no longer worthy of protection and be honest with the public that this is about watering down the British people’s existing rights.”