Rights for vegans in the UK are currently in jeopardy.

In the European Union, veganism is recognised as a "protected belief" under Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights. Within the UK, this is implemented by The Human Rights Act 1998, and demonstrated in case law (H. v. the United Kingdom [1992], 16 EHRR CD 44. Page 45).

By protecting vegans from discrimination and bullying, this legislation makes it easier for vegans to stay vegan - indirectly reducing animal exploitation.

However, with the UK leaving the EU, and the government planning to replace The Human Rights Act with a Bill Of Rights, protection for vegans in the UK is in jeopardy.

If the new Bill Of Rights does not encompass veganism, vegans in the UK who have their rights infringed may need to pursue their case at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg rather than through the national courts. (Note that The European Court of Human Rights is a separate entity to the European Union, and should not be confused with the European Court of Justice, the highest court of the European Union.)

Furthermore, having left the EU, the UK would also be free to withdraw from the European Convention on Human Rights, meaning that vegans in the UK would have no legal protection at all. And while the government says that it has no plans to withdraw from this Convention, the UK's exit from the EU would remove the main obstacle to doing so. (The Convention is mandatary for membership of the EU.)

Therefore, it is vital to ensure that any Bill Of Rights provides at least equivalent protection for vegans to that currently offered by The Human Rights Act.

(Naturally, we'd also expect to see a Bill Of Rights continue to offer protection for all other groups currently protected by the Human Rights Act. And while we're undoubtedly not best placed to provide a definitive list, this should cover those of any race, ethnicity, nationality, biological sex, gender, sexuality, age, ability, or religion - including those of none.)