This briefing paper outlines how the government’s proposed CV Bill will give the state far-reaching powers to dismantle the fundamental rights of individuals and communities.
While decisive action is essential to tackle the coronavirus outbreak, such an approach means that the Bill also poses a long term threat to the social fabric of the UK.
Extra powers must be subject to strict and effective oversight and must end within a reasonable time around the end of the pandemic.
CAGE raises the following concerns about the Bill:
- It allows the state to detain, isolate, assess and force disclosures about infections from individuals – as well as making non-compliance an offence;
- It consists of vague terms around the banning of events, gatherings and meetings, which can be easily extended to outlaw protests, shut down political activism, and undermine freedom of association;
- The amendments to the Mental Health Act 1983 allow for easier detention and medication-without-consent of individuals, an alarming development in the context of the high rate of deaths in mental health detention.
- Most alarmingly, the Bill includes clauses that allows it to be extended, modified and effectively made permanent in the future.
(NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.)