Report lauds Human Rights Act on 20th anniversary

Judith Robertson
In a new briefing the Scottish Human Rights Commission has detailed the positive difference the Human Rights Act has made to the protection of people’s rights in Scotland since it came into force 20 years ago.
Citing examples such as legal representation in detention, fairness in the judicial system and the management of data, the commission’s briefing will inform an inquiry into 20 years of the Human Rights Act being held by the UK Parliament’s Joint Committee on Human Rights.
Judith Robertson, chair of the commission, said: “The Human Rights Act has benefited people in many settings from health and social care services to police custody to the media and safeguards on personal data.
“Its impact has been felt beyond the courtroom, with its provisions clearly helping to drive the continued development of a more proactive culture of protecting human rights across Scotland’s public sector.
“Our evidence to this inquiry shows why the legal enforceability of rights is a crucial part of making them meaningful in practice.
The bedrock of protection for rights provided by the Human Rights Act should be both maintained and built on to incorporate other international human rights standards into Scots law, in particular economic, social and cultural rights.”
Read the commission’s full written evidence.