“Now is the time to defend the torture ban and uphold the rights of torture survivors”

These are troubling times. It's time to shape our future and make sure the UK is a place we’re proud to call home. Sonya Sceats, our Chief Executive, introduces our new campaign #ASafePlace and explains why, now more than ever, it's vital we stand up for our values. 

Blog by Sonya Sceats, Chief Executive of Freedom from Torture.

These are troubled times.

I believe that the normalisation of extremist views by politicians and public figures more interested in power than responsibility is leading to a clear and immediate danger to human rights globally.

This includes the absolute ban on torture.

Across the world, values of tolerance and freedom are under threat. Proponents of torture are gaining the upper hand. They are taking to the helm of governments, even in democracies like Brazil, the Philippines and the United States of America.

Here in the UK also, we cannot take long-fought-for principles for granted. Still, we are waiting for the full truth with accountability for UK complicity in torture during the so-called "War on Terror".

Torturers everywhere are emboldened in this climate. And survivors of torture feel more threatened and alone.

Torturers everywhere are emboldened in this climate. And survivors of torture feel more threatened and alone.

Countries of asylum are trying harder to close their doors. In the UK the bar for proving torture in the asylum system is becoming impossible to meet in practice. Those failed by the asylum system are especially vulnerable after years of austerity and what has become known as the "hostile environment".

Now is the time for us to organise, to defend the torture ban and uphold the rights of torture survivors to live in safety and with dignity.

That's why I am asking you to sign a declaration urging the UK to do more to be a safe place for people fleeing torture and remain a force for good on the global stage.

Will you take a stand with us and make your voice heard?