The essence of being a citizen in today’s modern and diverse Great Britain lies in the bedrock of Fundamental British Values. These values form the core of our community, highlighting the significance of celebrating the diversity that exists within the United Kingdom. It is important to note that these values are not limited to British society alone, they are also embraced by other democratic nations as a means of establishing a harmonious society. By adhering to these values, individuals can experience a sense of safety, worth, and belonging, allowing them to contribute positively to both their own well-being and that of others.
These values include:
- The rule of Law
- Individual liberty
- Mutual Respect and tolerance of different faiths & beliefs and for those without faiths.
Democracy is a form of government where power is vested in the people, who exercise it either directly or through elected representatives. Where people can take part in the decisions that affect the way their community is run. The people elect their leaders, and these leaders make decisions based on opinion, cost and what the people want. The British Parliament is based on democracy which allows ordinary people to have a say in what the government does.
Without democracy, the country would be run by a governing body who are not elected by the people. This governing body can override any law or rule in place to suit its own needs and gains.
The Rule of Law
Rule of law is a principle under which all persons, institutions, and entities are accountable to all laws. They have an obligation to comply with these rules to keep society functioning and fair. No country can maintain a rule of law society if its people do not respect the laws. Everyone must make a commitment to respect laws, legal authorities, legal signage and signals, and courts. The rule of law functions because most of us agree that it is important to follow laws every day.
The rule of law means that all individuals are required to comply with laws, regulations, and Acts. It is important to ensure that no one is above the law. The law helps protect the individual, institution, and roadways to promote a safer environment.
Individual liberty entails safeguarding not only your own rights but also the rights of those you work with. It surrounds the freedom to exercise personal choices and engage in desired actions if they fall within the bounds of reason and adherence to the law. By upholding the other three foundational values of British society and respecting the rights of others, individuals have the autonomy to pursue their ambitions and embrace their own convictions. Every person possesses the right to express their individuality if they adhere to the Fundamental British Values. No one should face discrimination, diminished rights, or exclusion based on their differences.
Rights as an employee – You have rights as an employee including, written terms outlining your job rights and responsibilities, as a minimum. Sick, holiday, and parental leave pay. Being able to claim redundancy and unfair dismissal after 2 years of service. This will apply to anyone as an employee, regardless of their differences, however, this will not apply to anyone on a zero-hour contract.
Mutual Respect and Tolerance
Mutual respect and tolerance are about respecting the ideas, values, and beliefs held by others, without forcefully imposing your own perspective onto others. It is a recognition that not all individuals in our present-day society uphold identical beliefs and values.
Some examples of how we can prevent hatred:
- Embracing diversity
- The importance of religion, traditions, cultural heritage, and preferences
- Tackling stereotyping, labelling, prejudice, and discrimination.