Press Release

Launch of the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission's new Report:
Professionals in the Firing Line

11 July 2012

The Conservative Party Human Rights Commission yesterday launched their latest report Professionals in the Firing Line: A report on violations of human rights affecting doctors, lawyers, teachers, business people and other professionals around the world.

The impartiality of doctors, nurses, lawyers, journalists, teachers and business people is of paramount importance across the world.  When the human rights of professionals are undermined or violated, the universal values of human rights for all people everywhere are threatened.  Any thriving economy and open society depends on their professional services and where those professionals are threatened it is up to others to act. 

Protecting and promoting human rights is “at the very centre” of the United Kingdom’s foreign policy and rightly so.  Furthermore it is the role of the Commission to hold the Government to that pledge, and to contribute to the policy-making process where it is able.  The Conservative Party Human Rights Commission has a responsibility to ensure that the spotlight is placed on individual cases, geographical situations and thematic issues where the UK has a responsibility and opportunity to take action. 

This powerful and emotive new report examines the restrictions, hindrances, abuse and danger that many professional people suffer as a result of repressive governments, religious extremism, corruption and violent non-state actors.  The report includes evidence from a huge range of contributors, both individuals and organisations, and gives shocking first-hand testimony from those who have been subjected to human rights violations. 

As well as welcoming the announcement that those who have been party to human rights violations will be refused visas in the future, the report makes a number of key recommendations to the Government on how the UK can best support professionals across the world.  The report details the abuses that are taking place across the world and makes suggestions about what the Government can do to tackle the dangerous situations that many professional people find themselves in all too frequently. 

Robert Buckland MP, Chair of the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission, said at the launch: “I hope that by contributing to the policy debate the Commission can, in its own small way, contribute towards the ongoing work underway that aims to create more open societies for professionals to practice with security, freedom and responsibility.”


Appendices – written submissions