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Hate Crime and Public Order (Scotland) Bill

Hate crime is the phrase used to describe behaviour which is both criminal and based on prejudice. There are already laws in place to protect certain groups, including trans people, from hate crime. The Hate Crime and Public Order (Scotland) Bill updates these existing laws and pulls most of these laws into one Bill. It also adds to the groups currently specifically protected by hate crime laws. The Bill creates a new crime of stirring up hatred against any of the protected groups covered by the Bill.

The Hate Crime and Public Order (Scotland) Bill is currently at Stage Three

23 April 2020 = Introduced in the Scottish Parliament.
15 December 2020 = Stage One completed.
16 February 2021 = Stage Two completed.
22 February 2021 = Justice Committee held an additional roundtable to discuss Freedom of Expression potential amendments.
Read about the bill’s progress.
Read the bill as amended at stage 2
Read about four possible options for a Freedom of Expression amendment at Stage Three.

Our Submissions and Briefings about the bill

Our Stage One written submission to the Scottish Parliament’s Justice Committee.

Our 17 November 2020 oral evidence to the Scottish Parliament’s Justice Committee.

Our Facebook thread explainer on some of the conversations about Freedom of Expression and the bill.

Our Stage Two briefing for MSPs.

Our submission on four options for a Stage Three freedom of expression amendment proposed by the Cabinet Secretary for Justice.

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