Official Secrets Act 1989

Name of Legislation and link to Parliament

Official Secrets Act 1989

Reason why it should be put on the Bonfire

It is important that national security is protected, but sometimes it will be the case that it is in the public interest that malpractice or illegal activity is exposed. The Official Secrets Act includes no public interest defence, however – so whistleblowers remain unprotected, even if their action is very much in the public interest. Part of the reason for this was a series of high-profile embarrassments for the Conservative government of the time; ministers’ embarrassment should not be allowed to overrule the public good.

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