The Government is planning to fast-track a British Bill of Rights, aiming to get the extremely controversial legislation on the statute books by next summer.
A Bill of Rights was a Conservative manifesto pledge, but is strongly opposed by civil liberties groups that say it will restrict freedoms that are guaranteed under the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).
The Independent reports that a 12-week public consultation on the Conservative Bill of Rights will start in November or December this year. It will be worded to clarify that the UK will not pull out of the European Convention of Human Rights, as some critics have feared, (and actually, as David Cameron has pledged previously) it will even mirror much of the ECHR language in an effort to “calm opposition.”
The Conservative Bill of Rights will go straight to the House of Commons without a Green or White Paper, which are usually introduced before legislative scrutiny.
Liberal Democrat leader, Tim Farron MP, said not allowing proper scrutiny of the Bill “makes a mockery of parliament”.
Mr Farron’s concerns have been echoed by the leading human rights barrister Geoffrey Robertson QC, who described the Government’s intention as an “outrage”.
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