Commission calls for views on priorities for 2024-2028
The Scottish Human Rights Commission has launched an online survey asking people across Scotland to help shape its Strategic Plan for 2024 to 2028, including its priorities, objectives and how the organisation approaches its work.
The Commission is interested in doing more work to bear witness to human rights violations and monitor how human rights are actually being experienced by people in Scotland.
We want to hear from as many people as possible about what you think about this as our focus for the next Strategic Plan; and how the Commission can work alongside people, communities, civil society, duty bearers and decision makers to protect and promote human rights in Scotland.
Shaping your Human Rights Commission
The Commission is a public body tasked with promoting and protecting the human rights of everyone in Scotland.
It is required by law to publish a new Strategic Plan every four years, and is currently preparing its fifth strategic plan for the period 2024-28 to lay before the Scottish Parliament in early 2024.
The Commission is undertaking this task at a vital time for human rights in Scotland, with an increasingly divergent human rights agenda at Westminster and Holyrood. This includes a proposed new Human Rights Bill from the Scottish Government, contrasting with recent UK Government proposals to repeal the Human Rights Act, the foundation through which all our rights are protected in law.
It’s also true that, whilst Scotland has developed a strong human rights narrative in policy and legislation since 2006, evidence available to the Commission suggests its impact hasn’t yet been fully felt in progressive outcomes in people’s lives.
Currently, there is a movement to establish a series of new public bodies (Commissions and/or Commissioners) in Scotland to uphold the rights of particular groups of people. The Commission believes this should be seen as a positive challenge to reform accountability mechanisms and the ways individuals can access justice around systematic denials of their human rights. The Commission is part of that system.
Scotland’s Human Rights Watchdog
In this context, the Commission is developing its 2024-28 Strategic Plan, taking a human rights based approach with a focus on participation from a wide range of stakeholders.
The organisation is asking the people of Scotland, their elected representatives and civil society organisations to share their views about what it can do to best deliver accountability on human rights for the next four years.
The questionnaire has three different sections and should take no longer than half an hour to complete. The sections explore:
- Human rights in Scotland
- How well you know your Commission
- Looking to the future and the changing landscape for human rights in Scotland
There are 12 questions in total and participants are free to skip questions at any point. The deadline to complete the survey is Monday 18th December 2023.
For more information on the Commission’s work to transition into its next phase, please see the following key publications:
- An article by Executive Director Jan Savage asking What Next for Upholding Human Rights in Scotland?
- A discussion paper: At a Crossroads: Which Way Now for the Human Rights System in Scotland?
- Independent Governance Review of the Scottish Human Rights Commission
- A discussion paper: Access to Justice For Everyone? How Might A New Human Rights Legal Framework Improve Access to Justice in Scotland Today?
- A Stronger Human Rights Commission for Scotland