Human rights protections need strengthened - Dillon
Sinn Féin MLA, Linda Dillon has said that designated special status within the European Union is the only guarantee that everyone on the north will have their human rights protected.
The Mid-Ulster MLA was speaking after the Equality and Human Rights Commission, the Scottish Human Rights Commission and the North's Human Rights Commission stated they "are concerned that there will be a reduction in current human rights protection once we leave the EU."
Linda Dillon said:
"In the face of the British government's Brexit agenda and their intention to repeal the Human Rights Act it is imperative that human rights protections are strengthened not weakened.
"The British government has failed to implement United Nations human rights standards. We cannot depend on them therefore offering even the most basic protections to all in our society.
"An assessment of the British government’s human rights record will be made next month as part of the UN's Universal Periodic Review process.
"All three commissions have submitted reports to the UN making it clear that the British government has more work to do in regards to issues such as access to justice, welfare reform and gender equality.
"The people of the north know all to well the lengths that British government will go to avoid being held accountable for their actions and inactions.
"The only way we can ensure that human rights are strengthened not weakened is by ensuring that we remain part of Europe, have access to the European Court of Justice and have our own Bill of Rights as was set out in the Good Friday Agreement.
"The denial of a Bill of Rights reflects the mind set of those who are opposed to equality and Human Rights.
"The north must have Designated Special Status within the EU, it is only by this process we can guarantee that everyone will have their human rights protected."