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The Human Rights Act (1998) Explained

By Life, PoliticalNo Comments

The Human Rights Act (1998) is one of the most misunderstood pieces of UK law. In this blog post, I’ll explain simply all about The Human Rights Act.

The Human Rights Act (1998) sets out in UK law the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). It has several articles and protocols including:

List of articles and protocols:

  • Article 2: Right to life
  • Article 3: Freedom from torture and inhuman or degrading treatment
  • Article 4: Freedom from slavery and forced labour
  • Article 5: Right to liberty and security
  • Article 6: Right to a fair trial
  • Article 7: No punishment without law
  • Article 8: Respect for your private and family life, home and correspondence
  • Article 9: Freedom of thought, belief and religion
  • Article 10: Freedom of expression
  • Article 11: Freedom of assembly and association
  • Article 12: Right to marry and start a family
  • Article 14: Protection from discrimination in respect of these rights and freedoms
  • Protocol 1, Article 1: Right to peaceful enjoyment of your property
  • Protocol 1, Article 2: Right to education
  • Protocol 1, Article 3: Right to participate in free elections
  • Protocol 13, Article 1: Abolition of the death penalty

Article 1 & 13 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) are not in The Human Rights Act (1998), as they are covered within the Act.

It is open to interpretation. For example, Article 12: The right to marry. Despite the Human Rights Act being dated 1998, Civil Partnerships for gay people only became legal in the UK in 2005. Gay Marriage only became legal in the UK in 2013. Prior to this the right to marry in the Human Rights Act (1998) was interpreted as only applying to straight people.

What it lacks?
With rights should come responsibilities. The Human Rights Act (1998) lacks listing responsibilities of the citizen, of local government and of national government. However you could argue that these responsibilities are covered by other UK laws.

The Human Rights Act does place a duty on Public Authorities to act within ways that are compatible with the Act, but again, this is open to interpretation.

The Human Rights Act (1998) exists to outline the rights and freedoms that every person in the UK should be entitled to.

The Human Rights Act was passed through UK parliament in 1998, but came into force in October 2000.

If a citizen feels their Human Rights have been denied, they can ask a court of law to look at their case. But this is a complex process and without good legal support can be difficult. This means that justice on Human Rights breeches are only challenged if people can afford good legal counsel, or are supported by certain charitable organisations that do work around Human Rights.

The Future of Human Rights?
The Government wants to replace The Human Rights Act (1998) with a British Bill of Rights. The concern is that this new bill of rights could weaken the rights laid out in The Human Rights Act and be even more open to interpretation than the current Act.

Blog soon,


British Institute of Human Rights
Citizens Advice – What rights are protected under the Human Rights Act?
Import: The History of Marriage in the UK
Liberty – The Human Rights Act
Equality and Human Rights Commission: A history of human rights in Britain


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Book Review: Into The Flames by Mel Bossa

By Amazon, Books & Authors, ReviewsNo Comments
The kind people at Publishers Group UK sent me a copy of Into the Flames by Mel Bossa to read and review on my blog. It’s written in the perspectives of the three main characters: Jamie, Dance and Neil.

Jamie or Dr. Jamie Scarborough to his patients is a psychiatrist. But poor Jamie suffers with his own mental health – he has severe anxiety (which at times lead to panic attacks) with a bit of OCD thrown in. He’s recently split up from bisexual Basil his partner of five years, leaving behind Basil’s sisters twin children Mallory and Marshall.

Dance is an eccentric, loveable and very intelligent compulsive liar. He’s homeless and the only family he has is a twin brother Seth whose desperate to become a woman named September. September however has an eating disorder so can’t get the psychiatric pass to allow the surgery.

Neil is a fire fighter who has been suspended due to putting his colleagues life at risk. Neil is a loner with his only family being an old dog that has to be put down by the vet. Neil’s poor mental health worsens after this trauma, making him unstable, neurotic and a very sinister person later in the book.

Jamie, Dance and Neil all have mental health issues in this story, the root cause of which is childhood trauma. This heavy subject matter made Into the Flames difficult to read at times, but what encouraged me to read on was the genuine care and compassion that I felt for the characters.

The story was slow to get going and initially focused on the characters issues rather than the characters and their development. I’m not sure if this was deliberate from Bossa, wanting the reader to care about the main characters to the point of us wanting to rescue them. Bossa also took her time in building the links and associations between the different characters which also encourages the reader to read on.

Towards the end of the book tension builds and you become hooked. Neil starts to have a neurotic breakdown becoming dangerous and Dance disappears. Will Neil harm anyone? If he does will it be physical or psychological torture or both? Where has Dance gone? Will he be OK?

Bossa uses the twin connection cleverly throughout the book and for more than one of the main characters. The story concludes traumatically but leaving the reader with a sense that everything will be OK in the end. I did feel sorry for Matt (one of the minor characters) who I felt was a loose string that could have been tied up at the end.

Overall the story is well written with the use of the characters perspectives being pleasing; it is obvious that Bossa has a lot passion for writing queer literature. Into the Flames is available to buy on Amazon.

Write soon,


I aim for posts on this blog to be informative, educational and entertaining. If you have found this post useful or enjoyable, please consider making a contribution by Paypal:

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