The Haldane Society has submitted a response to the Commission on a Bill of Rights' Second Consultation. The Commission has been charged with making recommendations as to whether the UK needs a new Bill of Rights. The Haldane Society welcomes the opportunity to further reinforce the protection of human rights within the British legal system, both in the context of those rights protected in the existing Human Rights Act 1998, and in other international conventions. The Haldane Society therefore calls on the government:
- To protect the existing Human Rights Act 1998;
- To sign and ratify the Council of Europe's Revised Social Charter and encorporate it into domestic law, providing the same protection for the rights it contains as is provided for those set out in the Human Rights Act;
- To place further rights, such as the right to jury trial and the right to silence, on the same footing;
- To cease attacks on legal aid, and instead to expand its scope, so as to allow rights to be properly enforced in the courts;
- To prevent the avoidance of the state's duties to protect human rights by privatising public authorities;
- To encourage the proper funding of the European Court of Human Rights so as to allow rights to be properly enforced.