BHA: Scrapping the Human Rights Act would be ‘an international embarrassment’ for the UK

Scrapping the Human Rights Act 1998 (HRA) would be an international embarrassment for the UK, the British Humanist Association (BHA) has said as it urged parliamentarians from across the political spectrum to defend the law.

The BHA has spoken out following remarks calling for the abolition of the HRA made over the weekend at the Conservative Party Conference by both the Prime Minister, David Cameron, and the Home Secretary, Theresa May, who said she would ‘[L]ike to see the Human Rights Act go’.
BHA Head of Public Affairs Naomi Phillips commented, 'The Human Rights Act is a vital piece of legislation for all of us, and its implementation confirmed the UK's place as a world leader in protecting and promoting people's fundamental rights and liberty.

‘The incorporation of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) into UK law through the HRA provides the clearest legal protection of universally recognised human rights and freedoms. With serious threats to its existence coming from people in the highest political positions of power, it is more important than ever for civil society and parliamentarians from across the political spectrum to make clear their support for the Act, and even to strengthen and develop it further.’

Ms Phillips continued ‘Scrapping the Human Rights Act would be deeply embarrassing for the UK internationally, and would seriously undermine efforts to make British society fair, free and where everyone is equal before the law.’

Read the comments by the Home Secretary and the Prime Minister

For further comment or information, please contact Naomi Philips on 020 7079 3585.

The British Humanist Association is the national charity working on behalf of non-religious people who seek to live ethical and fulfilling lives on the basis of reason and humanity. It promotes a secular state and equal treatment in law and policy of everyone, regardless of religion or belief.