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Tories to push ahead with plans to repeal Human Rights Act

Nick Duffy May 10, 2015


The Conservatives are set to push ahead with plans to repeal the Human Rights Act and replace it with a British Bill of Rights.

David Cameron – who won a Parliamentary majority last week – had pledged to “once and for all” repeal the Act last year, and his party included the move in its manifesto.

The Liberal Democrats had vowed to oppose any repeal of the law – but without a coalition government, they will no longer be able to block it.

David Cameron appointed former education secretary Michael Gove as Secretary of State for Justice today – replacing Chris Grayling – and the minister will be responsible for pushing forward with the changes.

Article 14 of the Human Rights Act, which affords protection from discrimination, has been used in many legal cases to argue for protection for LGBT people.

A planning document that was previously made public on the Conservative website says the new British Bill of Rights will only be applicable in certain circumstances, and will not be valid for “trivial” matters.

It states: “The use of the new law will be limited to cases that involve criminal law and the liberty of an individual, the right to property and similar serious matters.

“There will be a threshold below which Convention rights will not be engaged, ensuring UK courts strike out trivial cases.

“We will work with the devolved administrations and legislatures as necessary to make sure there is an effective new settlement across the UK.”

It also explicitly states that the British Bill of Rights will not apply to the armed forces – which could strip LGBT soldiers of legal recourse under anti-discrimination protections.

At time of writing, the document appears to now be unavailable, but PinkNews has uploaded a copy here.

Protecting Human Rights in the UK

The Prime Minister is expected to announce the reform in his Queen’s speech on May 27, according to the Telegraph.

More: British Bill of Rights, Conservative, David Cameron, Equality, Gay, human rights, Human Rights Act, LGBT, Prime Minister, Tory

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