Nowadays, you do not have to look too far to find stories about how people are relying upon the provisions of The Human Rights Act 1998 to ensure that their fundamental rights are being respected in one way or another. Check out websites such as UK Net Guide and you will soon discover what common practice this really is.
The Human Rights Act originated when the UK Government recognised the need for the articles of The European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) to be entrenched more acutely into our legal system. Contrary to what many people may think, this was not a whole host of new legal provisions; instead, it was a mere consolidation of laws the UK had actually ratified many decades earlier.
However, it is probably fair to say that prior to this Act of Parliament, human rights were rather placed on the back-burner in comparison with today. Our common law system did not respect human rights issues as widely as they should have.
In the P.C. society we live in now, many people now feel that human rights law is going too far. Whether this is criminals using the Act to get themselves out of sticky situations, or prisoners demanding the right to vote, people have become worried over the fact that human rights laws appear to be too far reaching.
Lawyers do seem to be jumping on far too many bandwagons lately and this is one of the main reasons why people are questioning the efficacy of The Human Rights Act. I understand that reviews of this legislation are already underway, but at the end of the day, The UK may be too heavily committed to the provisions of The ECHR to actually do anything about them.
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