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Liberty IntactHuman Rights in English Law$
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Michael Tugendhat

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198790990

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198790990.001.0001

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The Future of British Rights

The Future of British Rights

(p.199) 15 The Future of British Rights
Liberty Intact

Michael Tugendhat

Oxford University Press

Under the HRA English courts reason more like the Court in Strasbourg, more by principle and less by precedent. Freedom of expression and personal privacy have been enhanced. In future common law may need to rely less on the HRA to keep pace with changes in society. Common law protects rights more than the ECHR and HRA: it binds individuals, it includes UDHR rights not in the ECHR, eg the right to work, and to a higher standard than the EHCR, eg fair trial. The common law is based on reason and conscience. But it needs clarification to conform to the rule of law requirements of certainty, etc. The ECHR omits rights, eg the social and economic rights popular in Britain’s welfare state. By transferring powers to the judges, the HRA has left people and MPs feeling of dispossessed. The people must believe in rights if they are to survive.

Keywords:   Strasbourg, HRA, ECHR, rule of law, right to work, social and economic rights

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