Lead story

Cameron climb-Down on Human Rights Act

by Daphne Liddle

DAVID Cameron has been forced to postpone his manifesto pledge to repeal the Human Rights Act and replace it with a British Bill of Rights, which was dropped from the measures announced in the Queen’s Speech on Wednesday as she opened the new session of Parliament.

But Cameron has made up for this set-back with new swingeing attacks on the unions and the right to strike and on political activists — described as “domestic extremists”. And there will be a punitive campaign against illegal immigrants.

Top of the list of measures was the commitment to a referendum on whether or not Britain should remain in the European Union. This was a manifesto pledge forced on Cameron to try to stop Tory voters defecting to the United Kingdom Independence Party.

And though in Parliament there will be a strong majority in favour of staying in the EU, which will include Labour and the Scottish National Party as well as the Tory leaders, in the country as a whole it will be a different matter.

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Cameron climb-Down on Human Rights Act

Criminal justice system still failing on disability hate crime

THE CRIMINAL justice system once again failed to take the necessary action to address its failings in dealing with disability hate crime, according to a new report.

Two years ago HM Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate, HM Inspectorate of Constabulary and HM Inspectorate of Probation concluded in a joint report that disability hate crime was “the hate crime that has been left behind”.

That report, Living in a Different World , called for attitudes to change, and said the criminal justice system had let down victims, pointing out how failings across the criminal justice system had helped lead to some of the most notorious disability hate crimes of recent years, including the deaths of Francecca and Fiona Pilkington , David Askew and Michael Gilbert .

Now, a follow-up report by the three inspectorates accuses the police, probation service and Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) of failing to implement their recommendations.

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Criminal justice system still failing on disability hate crime

Editorial

Careful what you wish for

BE CAREFUL what you wish for because it might just happen just about sums up the mood of the post-election political scene in Britain today. Labour expected the Liberal- Democrat vote to collapse. It did, but the only beneficiary was the Conservatives because the Tory vote held. The Scottish nationalists expected to sweep the board in Scotland which they did. But hopes of playing off Labour against the Tories in the new parliament have been dashed, at least for the moment, by the Tory victory.

The far-right United Kingdom Independence Party hoped to get their leader into parliament to head a Ukip bloc in the House of Commons. But Nigel Farage was defeated in Thanet and they lost one of their two parliamentary seats in May. The Tories campaigned to win the election outright but only hoped they would be able to continue to govern in concert with the Liberal-Democrats. They ended up with a 12-seat overall majority — a slim margin that makes the Cameron leadership hostage to the Eurosceptic backbenchers clamouring for a new referendum on the European Union.

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Careful what you wish for