Protection of Freedoms Bill – Public Reading Stage


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The Cabinet Office launched an experimental site to enable clause-level comments on draft legislation. It was a simple technological platform, and doesn’t appear to have been rolled out more widely yet, but it’s an interesting extension to the scope of public consultation, blurring the lines between Government and Parliament, and an attempt to take feedback from a previous crowdsourcing exercise (‘Your Freedom’) further, closing the feedback loop:

On Friday 11th February 2011, the Coalition Government published the Protection of Freedoms Bill. This Bill brings together a raft of measures to restore hard-won British liberties that have been lost in recent years. Some of the measures came from the 14,000 ideas left on the Your Freedom website.

The Government is committed to continuing this public engagement with the content of the Protection of Freedoms Bill. This website gives you the opportunity to comment on each clause contained in the Bill. Your comments will get collated at the end of this public consultation and fed through directly to the Parliamentarians who will carry the Bill through the House of Commons (go to the Parliament website to learn about the passage of a bill). These comments will assist and challenge MPs, aiding their scrutiny and debate on the details of the Bill. This is a pilot for the ‘public reading stage’ that the Government wants to introduce to give the public an increased say in all bills

Update: the second iteration of this site is also profiled here

for more examples and tips