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law society makes fresh call for new rights

21 December 2012

The Law Society has advocated formal creation of ‘constitutional rights’. This follows recommendations by the commission on a Bill of Rights. The idea is to supplement existing legislation in the Human Rights Act, rather than creating a new bill.

Although certain rights are currently protected, president Lucy Scott-Moncrieff moots whether certain economic and social rights should be added, and as to why families cannot have ‘relevant rights’ enshrined in law.

Despite no formal written constitution, the UK has a number of constitutional documents. The debate surfaces periodically, and was perhaps most prominent recently following proposed counter-terrorism measures after the 9/11 attacks in New York, and those of July 7 2005 in London.

Critics claimed that the 1998 Human Rights Act would devastate the public sector. This was a fear largely unfounded, but concerns persist about its interpretation. It would nevertheless represent a brave step to interfere with the balance and compromises found in the 1998 Act, perhaps hence the diffidence to create a new bill.

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