Secularists echo CI concerns over hate crime proposals

Jan 15, 2021 by

from The Christian Institute:

The National Secular Society (NSS) has reiterated The Christian Institute’s warnings over proposed new hate crime laws in England and Wales.

Last year, The Institute sounded the alarm over Law Commission plans to lower the threshold at which hate crimes can be committed, including criminalising so-called hate speech even in private dwellings.

Now the NSS has added its voice, saying that the commission’s proposals could threaten free speech.

‘Chilling effect’

Spokeswoman Megan Manson said: “Any changes to the law around hate crime and communications should not undermine our collective right to freedom of expression.

“Aspects of the Law Commission’s proposals would leave too much room for interpretation, which would have a chilling effect on free speech.”

She added: “Such laws can have unintended consequences and be a counterproductive way of tackling hate crime or hateful extremism.”

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