It isn’t just university students who can be described as ‘snowflakes’, apparently. A move is afoot to include ‘trigger warnings’ in Hansard, the official Parliamentary record, to protect MPs and peers of a more delicate disposition why might be upset by the use of offensive words and phrases by some of their fruitier colleagues. The Independent has more.
A move to include offence trigger warnings on the official parliamentary record has been criticised at Westminster, amid fears it could have a chilling effect on what members say.
Concerns over adding the alert feature to Hansard online were raised across the Lords, with accusations it amounted to “a clear breach of centuries of convention” on free speech at Westminster.
The upper chamber heard the measure stemmed from a proposal by the House of Lords Inclusion and Diversity team.
A key complaint raised by peers was the lack of consultation and that approval had not been sought of the House.
Peers have previously hit out at attempts to silence them after raising concerns in Parliament over housing transgender prisoners in women’s jails, leading to them being contacted by a Westminster watchdog following complaints.
This was despite them being covered by parliamentary privilege – a right dating back more than 300 years that allows them to freely express their views in the upper chamber.
Criticising procedural changes being made without prior consultation or agreement, Tory former Cabinet minister Lord Forsyth of Drumlean said: “For example, only today, I learned that there is a proposal to have trigger points in Hansard where what members say may have been considered to have caused offence, and so someone would put something in to that effect.”
He was supported by fellow Tory peer Lord Cormack, who said: “Far too much is happening in this place without proper consultation.”
Worth reading in full.