UK: Public Order Act may drop “insulting” as an offence

Section 5 of the 1986 Public Order Act could be adjusted to remove the word “insulting” from legislation, it was announced today (10 December). Director of public prosecutions Keir Starmer has said that past cases could be classified as “abusive”, as opposed to “insulting”. Section 5 has stirred controversy in the past: in 2010, a Christian preacher was charged with a public order offence for telling a police officer homosexuality was “a sin”. A Home Office spokesman told the Telegraph that it had “consulted on removing ‘insulting’ from the Act and was considering the responses.” The House of Lords will take a vote on the matter on Wednesday (12 December).