Why Suella Braverman as home secretary paints a bleak future for human rights

Suella Braverman wears pink and she looks somewhere off camera

Suella Braverman’s appointment as home secretary is vastly concerning given her “divisive politics”, attacks on trans rights and support for repealing human rights law.

Braverman was named home secretary by Liz Truss on Tuesday evening (6 September).

She will take over from Priti Patel, who held the position since 2019 and announced her resignation on Monday (5 September).

Before the announcement was made, Micro Rainbow CEO Sebastian Rocca described Braverman’s widely-expected appointment as “not good news”.

He highlighted Braverman’s history of “divisive politics”, a “poor voting track record on LGBTQI rights” and previous anti-trans comments. 

“It reminds me of Priti Patel’s lack of empathy and humanity,” Rocca said. “I hope I will be proved wrong.”

Suella Braverman set the benchmark for the Tory leadership race.

Braverman was the first person to jump into the Tory leadership race to succeed Boris Johnson, launching her short-lived Tory leadership run by saying Britain needs to “get rid of all this woke rubbish”.

Braverman failed to make it past the second ballot of Tory MPs, but in many ways her words set the tone of the race.

Suella Braverman wears red as she stands a podium

Suella Braverman was the first person to launch her Tory leadership campaign run, and she used anti-trans rhetoric to gain support – setting the tone for the rest of the race. (Getty)

Both Truss and runner-up Rishi Sunak used hustings to be critical of trans rights, and both even denied trans women are women during a hustings in August.

Braverman’s record as attorney general paints a troubling picture

In July, she suggested Westminster could block Scotland’s long-promised and life-saving reform of the Gender Recognition Act, arguing it would create a “two-tier system” within the UK. 

Braverman recited a number of anti-trans talking points, saying she thinks a “rights culture” has “spun out of control” in the UK. She claimed there’s a “collective frenzy” over trans rights which meant the “basics of biology” have been “turned upside down”. 

A close up of Suella Braverman as she speaks to someone off camera

Suella Braverman said she believes schools are “indoctrinating children” by teaching them “keywords” about the LGBTQ+ community. (Getty)

Braverman said in a speech before the Policy Exchange in August that schools in the UK could be “indoctrinating children”, and that “misinformed” teachers are “socially transitioning” pupils.

She also claimed it was “lawful” for schools to deadname and misgender trans pupils as well as deny them access to certain toilets or to play some sports activities. 

Robin White, the only openly trans woman in the country to work as a discrimination barrister, told PinkNews the rights of trans youth are protected by law – despite what Braverman might say.

Suella Braverman’s statements on how to solve the UK’s immigration ‘problem’ give bleak outlook on future.

Braverman suggested during her campaign run that the only way the UK can solve its immigration “problem” and ensure Brexit is “delivered” is to leave the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). 

She described the ECHR – which protects human rights and political freedoms in Europe – as “interventionist” and “politicised”. 

Removing the UK from the ECHR is difficult because the rights of the body were incorporated into the nation’s law in 1998 through the Human Rights Act. The ECHR was also enshrined within part of the Good Friday agreement, which was a peace agreement signed by the British and Irish governments.

One of the reasons why Conservatives have targeted the ECHR as of late is because of the UK’s egregious Rwanda policy. 

Several activists gather together to protest proposals by the UK government to deport some migrants to Rwanda

Several migrant advocacy groups and activists have criticised the Tory government’s proposals to deport some asylum seekers to Rwanda. (Getty)

There was an immense outcry when Patel’s Home Office announced it would send migrants who arrive via the English Channel, to Rwanda, putting the lives of LGBTQ+ asylum seekers in jeopardy

However, the inaugural flight of asylum seekers to Rwanda was abandoned at the last minute after a ruling by the ECHR. The legality of the policy is now being tested in a full hearing by the High Court

In August, Suella Braverman declared it was a “national priority” for the UK to break ties with the ECHR. She also took aim at what she described as a “culture where fringe campaign groups, purporting to champion rights, have claimed a moral high ground and have adopted an attitude of intolerance”. 

“Equality laws have been misconstrued and weaponised to fight those who challenge their views as perpetrators of hate speech, calling for them to be swiftly no-platformed or cancelled,” she added.