Martha Spurrier

Martha Spurrier
Liberty
Director

Martha is a human rights barrister. Before joining Liberty, she specialised in defending access to justice, challenging state failures and fighting for the rights of women, children and disabled people.

She has worked with bereaved families seeking answers after loved ones died in state care, victims of rape, domestic violence and trafficking who have been failed by the police, and protestors and journalists whose freedoms have been under attack.

Martha was previously a lawyer at Mind and the Public Law Project and she has written books about human rights, policing and disability rights. She is a trustee of Medical Justice.

Martha joined Liberty because she wanted to be part of a team of passionate, principled people using their diverse skills to hold the powerful to account and stand up for people’s rights. Litigation is only part of the answer – and she loves being part of an ambitious campaigning organisation that has many different tools for achieving change.

Articles by Martha Spurrier

In court, in Parliament, on the streets – we're ready

Our role in fighting for everyone’s rights feels more vital than ever.

Read more

Editing the Human Rights Act is unthinkable - this is why

We’re reading all the parties’ manifestos as they come out and we’ll issue a full analysis once they’re all released.

However, one line in the Conservative manifesto stood out – their pledge to ‘update the Human Rights Act’.

We love the Act as it is and it’s worth reflecting why. 

It protects every one of us – young and old, rich and poor, you and your neighbour. Our Human Rights Act has defended people in the UK for more than 20 years. It’s safeguarded our soldiers, and supported our right to protest peacefully. 

Read more

It’s time to vote like your rights depend on it

The upcoming General Election is our chance to create a better society.

Read more

The Court didn’t rule on our case today, but the PM knows Liberty stands ready to hold him to account

Whatever happens in Westminster over the next few days, the Prime Minister knows our case stands ready to hold him to account and ensure the law is upheld.

Today in court the Prime Minister confirmed our worst fears – that he thinks he can take steps which we say would subvert the law. His lawyers told the court that the Prime Minister can take steps whose “likely or anticipated or intended effect” would be to make the EU refuse a request for a Brexit extension. Liberty’s case is that this is unlawful – the Prime Minister cannot act to subvert the Benn Act.

Read more

The Prime Minister must obey the law – if not, we’ll see him in court

Since Liberty was founded in 1934, it has held Governments of all colours and persuasions to account. Today, we uphold that tradition as we seek a judicial review to ensure the Prime Minister obeys the law.

Read more

International Women's Day: 8 actions for 8 March

As we celebrate International Women's Day, Liberty's Director Martha Spurrier sets out eight actions you can take today to stand up for women's rights and support the women in your life.

Read more

New Year, New Challenges, Same Liberty

And just like that, it’s over. The years seem to disappear quicker than Cabinet ministers these days.

As another tally mark is added to Liberty's history, we’re older and wiser for it. That's 84 now – but we're as sprightly as ever.

There were attacks on rights and freedoms from many quarters in 2017, but it saw Liberty and all of our members and supporters do what we’re here to do – stand up to power, stand up for our rights and challenge intolerance, injustice and abuse of power wherever we find it.

Read more

Why we're part of a coalition of human rights organisations taking on the UK Government's mass surveillance regime

Next week brings a watershed moment in the battle to protect our privacy rights and the rule of law against mass government surveillance.

Read more

Whistleblower, abortion rights campaigners and entire Welsh town honoured at Liberty Human Rights Awards

When it comes to the Government respecting and protecting our rights, freedom and equality, this has been a dark year – from the contempt for democracy shown in the Repeal Bill to technologically illiterate attacks on our online privacy and the continued creep of immigration enforcement into every corner of UK life. 

But last night Liberty members and supporters came together to honour those who aren’t willing to sit back and accept this vision of our country’s future at our annual Human Rights Awards.

Read more

Stonewall Season: 50 years of inspiration to keep fighting for LGBT rights

It’s been 50 years since the Sexual Offences Act decriminalised homosexual sex between men aged over 21 – and LGBT rights have come a long way since then.

This week, as part of Stonewall Season, we’re celebrating the progress made over those decades as inspiration to keep fighting – because that work is far from finished.

In fact, as the Government grants ministers unprecedented new powers to rewrite our laws after Brexit, we face the grim prospect of a rollback on those rights.

Read more

Pages