The Women Asylum Seekers Together (WAST) Nightingales choir will perform Christmas carols for MPs and peers in Parliament today (Wednesday 16 December) – to raise awareness of the urgent need for an end to unlimited immigration detention.
The event – hosted by Liberty Director Shami Chakrabarti and Conservative, Labour, SNP and Liberal Democrat politicians – will see MPs unite in support of a time limit on immigration detention.
A Coroner has today decided that the inquest into the death of Alice Gross should investigate wider questions around what authorities knew – or ought to have known – about her murderer.
Liberty, which is representing Alice’s family, had made submissions to the Coroner that the case engages Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights, enshrined into UK law in the Human Rights Act.
Liberty campaigners today unveiled an 11-foot banner celebrating the Human Rights Act in Westminster Hall, in protest against the Act’s omission from a parliamentary exhibition commemorating the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta.
Shadow minister for human rights Andy Slaughter MP joined the protesters to mark Human Rights Day by unfurling the specially-created banner.
Liberty will tomorrow launch a legal challenge to the Government’s criminal records disclosure scheme, which forces people with more than one conviction to divulge them forever when applying for certain types of work – regardless of individual circumstances or the minor nature of the offences.
Liberty’s client – referred to in this case as P – committed two extremely minor offences in 1999 while suffering from a then undiagnosed mental illness.
Giving evidence to the House of Lords Constitution Committee today, Justice Secretary and Lord Chancellor Michael Gove said plans to replace the Human Rights Act with a British Bill of Rights have not yet been signed off by ministers and that a consultation will not open until next year.
A consultation had been promised by this autumn, but Mr Gove said there was still significant work to be done before it could be launched.
Responding to his comments, Bella Sankey, Policy Director for Liberty, said:
Liberty has welcomed Newport City Council’s decision to radically overhaul its plans for a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) that would have constituted a major threat to civil liberties – and an affront to the city’s Chartist legacy.
It was confirmed at a Council meeting last night that the authority will no longer proceed with proposals to place a blanket ban on rough sleeping and begging in the city centre.
On the 5th November Hossam Bahgat, journalist and founder of human rights group Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, received a summons from Military Intelligence. He attended their headquarters on Sunday morning where he was interrogated, without legal counsel, for many hours. Today Military Prosecution ordered his detention for four days. It is not known where he is being detained.