Justice committee report on ‘The UK, the EU and a British Bill of Rights’

On 9 May 2016, Parliament’s EU Justice Sub-committee published its report on the Government’s proposal to introduce a UK Bill of Rights.

The report, The UK, the EU and a British Bill of Rights, says that the Government’s proposals:

  • Will not depart significantly from the existing Human Rights Act.
  • Are likely to “affirm” in a Bill of Rights all the rights contained within European Convention on Human Rights [as Stated by the Secretary of State], making the necessity of a Bill of Rights unclear.
  • May damage the UK’s standing within the Council of Europe and the EU, and its moral authority internationally.
  • May, lead to an increasing reliance on the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights in UK courts if the scope of the Human Rights Act is reduced.
  • Risk constitutional upheaval with the devolved nations, with the consequence that the proposed UK Bill of Rights could end up as an English Bill of Rights.