No one should take Pink News seriously. But when it bullies people with baseless and defamatory allegations, Fair Cop cannot stay silent.
It’s easy to mock Pink News but it’s dangerous to dismiss it. This is a blog with well over six million monthly unique visitors, so what it lacks in intellectual clout it more than makes up for in readership.
So when PN turns its guns — and its followers — against a blameless individual, it’s not enough to sit back and treat it with our usual mixture of wry amusement, pity and contempt.
Guidance threatened to criminalise children for asserting their rights to dignity, privacy and safety
Thursday 30th April
Police LGBT+ guidance for schools has been withdrawn after a 14-year-old girl brought a legal action against its authors.
Fair Cop considers the proposed new Scottish criminal offence of ‘stirring up hatred’ and how this can be reconciled with freedom of speech and the judgment in Miller v College of Policing
On April 24th, Humza Yousaf, an SNP politician and Cabinet Secretary for Justice, published the Scottish Government’s new Hate Crime Bill.
This emerged after Lord Bracadale was asked to review the state of Scotland’s hate crime law. He reported in May 2018, noting that the current law was a mess, scattered over a variety of different bits of legislation and treating different characteristics in different ways.
The Equality and Human Rights Commission is a non-departmental public body, established by the Equality Act of 2006, taking over from the Commission for Racial Equality, the Equal Opportunities Commission and the Disability Rights Commission. It is responsible for the promotion and enforcement of laws preventing discrimination and has a general duty to foster mutual respect between communities. There are nine protected characteristics in the Equality Act 2010 – age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation. The EHRC has asked government departments collecting statistics to do so with reference to each.
Fair Cop asks why the police appear to favour LGBT above other marginalised groups.
The Police have been vocal and visible in their support of the LGBT community. But same-sex attraction and ‘transgender’ are only two of the monitored hate crime strands. People can also be victims of a hate crime based on their race, religion and disability.
Hate crime is a serious issue, but why do police forces spend so much of their overstretched resources supporting and promoting LGBT+ organisations — including trans lobby groups — while paying scant attention to other protected groups?
In Fair Cop’s latest letter to chief constables Sarah Phillimore, who is herself disabled, asks why police forces treat some ‘strands’ as more equal than others; and she officially enquires how much time and money they devote to each protected group.
“Mister Justice Knowles is very clear: We have never had a Gestapo or a Stasi in Great Britain, but the actions of Humberside Police came way too close.
By Sarah Phillimore
On Friday, January 24th I was alerted to the recently launched Crown Prosecution Service Hate Crime Schools Project on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans+ Hate Crime. In their words:
Fair Cop is deeply concerned that new police and CPS guidelines will criminalise schoolchildren for expressing doubts about gender ideology.
The reasoning in this judgement has enormous and wide-ranging implications for freedom of conscience and expression. The right to freedom of conscience – as enshrined in Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights – is only meaningful if citizens can express their beliefs without fear of sanction.
November. In my mind always the ‘nothing-time,’ the liminal space between the brightly lit days of September and October, when the Northern Hemisphere hasn’t quite finished its tilt away from the sun, and the dank, grey days and rotting leaf-mounds that have to be endured before the light and glitter of the Christmas season. But this November is different.
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