The future of the left since 1884

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Time to rethink? A new drugs policy for Labour

Nick Clegg’s declaration last week that UK drugs policy was ‘idiotic’ merited far more attention than it received. The Lib Dems have announced to take steps towards treating addiction as a health issue rather than a criminal one and to...

The acid test for international justice

As of today, 1,814 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces.  Almost a quarter of the dead are children.  The Israeli military has targeted schools, hospitals and civilian homes in Gaza. Overall the picture is one of carnage and collective...

The case for the human rights act

The Human Rights Act 1998 (HRA) is a very simple statute. It works like any bill of rights in allowing individuals in the UK to enforce their rights in their local courts. It also requires public authorities to respect the...

The uses of euphemism

Gareth Myatt died while being forcibly restrained by three prison officers at Rainsbrook Secure Training Centre near Rugby.  He died because, although he complained he couldn’t breathe, officers kept his body restricted in a hold called the ‘Seated Double Embrace’. ...

We all make mistakes: Legal aid under threat

Many of the children and young people our legal team work with have made terrible mistakes. That is not to belittle the impact of those mistakes on their victims. A great number of the children I have worked for have...

A super-size mistake

As the Ministry of Justice announces that a ‘super-prison’ will be built in North Wales to house up to 2,000 inmates by 2017, it seems that Chris Grayling will be keeping any hopes of meaningfully rehabilitating offenders safely behind bars...

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