The legislative framework for safeguarding human rights came about because of the need to protect people from the overweening power of the state – as witnessed by Nazi and Soviet atrocities in the 20th century. The UK was one of the first countries to ratify the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) by enacting the Human Rights Act 1998 (HRA). However, with the general election fast approaching in May 2015, the fate of the HRA is being tested as the Conservative Party has pledged to repeal it and replace it with a “British Bill of Rights”. A central theme dominating the repeal debate has been that of restoring parliamentary sovereignty to Westminster. This article, by Annette Haddad outlines the deficiencies of this argument and suggests that repeal would weaken the promotion and protection of human rights in the UK.
Protecting Parliamentary Sovereignty: A Justification for Repealing the Human Rights Act?