Liberty UK: Government must not be untouchable

There is a democratic crisis in the UK. This Government is attempting to put itself – and all future governments – beyond the reach of the law, silencing people in the process.

The UK has a system of checks and balances to ensure that whichever party is in government, their actions should remain within the law and don’t infringe upon our fundamental rights. 

But those in power have plans to curb people’s ability to hold them accountable for their actions.

It’s time for all of us to stand up to power and send a message that the Government must not become untouchable. 


The Government is attempting to cut off important avenues of accountability – in Parliament, through the courts, on the streets and in society.

Ministers are sidelining our elected MPs when making and changing laws. COVID regulations have been created and amended upwards of 425 times, with many coming into force before or on the same day MPs first had a chance to debate them.

Right now, people can challenge public authorities in court when they act unlawfully.

This is known as ‘judicial review’. During the pandemic, some disabled people were able to use judicial review to protect their rights, while legal action taken by two doctors over a lack of personal protective equipment (PPE) prompted major changes. But the Government is now trying to make it harder for people to challenge injustice in court.

It has set up a panel to look into weakening our Human Rights Act. The Human Rights Act enables people to enforce their rights in British courts if public authorities don’t respect them. If we can’t enforce our rights, they will become meaningless.

The new Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill – known as the Police Crackdown Bill – will criminalise people who take to the streets to have their voices heard and give police more powers to shut down protests.

And ministers are cutting off people’s access to information by regularly screening and rejecting freedom of information requests by journalists and campaigning organisations, and boycotting popular news programmes.

The Government is hiding from accountability at every turn.

Being able to stand up to power and challenge injustice is at the heart of our democracy. We must not let the Government become untouchable. Join the Liberty campaign today.

Thank you for your support.

Sam Grant

Head of Policy and Campaigns

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