A group of Liberal Democrats at a pride march

Our Campaigning Victories

The Liberal Democrats are a campaigning party. Our campaigning victories deliver a fair deal for people across the UK. Find out how we've delivered for communities like yours.

2023 - Worker Protection Act

Wera Hobhouse's Worker Protection Act gives employees protections from sexual harassment in the workplace. 

The Bill presents an opportunity to shift the culture in our workplaces where harassment is no longer tolerated. It will create a duty on employers to prevent harassment from happening and should bring about a long-term change in attitudes.

Older man watches child playing on a tablet

2023 - Carer's Leave Act

Wendy Chamberlain's Carer's Leave Act gives 2.4 million across the UK a statutory right to take five days of unpaid leave per year, helping carers to better balance work and care.

The law has been described by the charity Carers UK as a ‘landmark’ piece of legislation. It is a first step to providing the greater support unpaid carers need.

2023 - Blocking a taxpayer payout to sewage-dumpers

Richard Foord MP's amendment to the UK Infrastructure Bank Act stopped the Conservatives' plan to write a blank cheque of taxpayers money to polluting water companies.

The Lib Dem win means the UK Infrastructure Bank will only be able to fund water companies if they produce a costed and timed plan for ending sewage discharges into rivers. 

2022 - Vagrancy Act repeal passed

The Vagrancy Act of 1824 made it a criminal offence to beg or be homeless on the street in England and Wales. Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran began the national campaign to repeal the Vagrancy Act in 2018 when a group of Oxford students brought the issue to her attention. A law repealing the act was finally passed in 2022, after 4 years of hard work from both MPs and activists.

Sleeping rough should not be a crime. Scrapping this archaic law represents the first step in a journey to taking a more compassionate and holistic approach to homelessness.

Layla Moran, 2021
A person holding a sign with the message "Freedom for Hong Kong"

2021 - New visas introduced to allow people from Hong Kong to come and live in the UK

The British National Overseas (BNO) visa grants Hong Kongers the right to live, work and study in the UK. Since the new visa programme launched, over 120,000 Hong Kongers have applied to move to Britain. Liberal Democrat MP Alistair Carmichael led the charge to introduce the new visa programme through his Hong Kong Bill.

2021 - New International Learning Exchange

As Wales' Education Minister, Kirsty Williams MS secured a ground-breaking replacement for Erasmus+. The programme goes far beyond the UK Government's Turing Scheme.

The scheme will fund 15,000 Welsh learners to study overseas with funding guaranteed until at least 2026. And 10,000 global learners will come to Wales to study and exhange experiences.

A person in scrubs and medical gloves holding a bag of donated blood

2021 - Blood donation barriers lifted for gay and bisexual men

The Liberal Democrats had been pushing to lift the ban on men who have sex with men's ability to donate blood for over 15 years by the time it was finally implemented in 2021. While there is still progress to be made in regards to discriminatory restrictions on blood donation, this was a huge leap forward, one which the Lib Dems have long campaigned for.

2018 - Upskirting outlawed

Upskirting is a highly intrusive practice, which typically involves someone taking a picture under another person’s clothing without their knowledge. In 2018, Liberal Democrat MP Wera Hobhouse tabled a Private Members’ Bill to make upskirting a specific crime – something that finally became law in the Voyeurism (Offences) Act 2019, following a tireless national campaign.

2016 - Improving Renters Rights

Lib Dem pressure to help renters afford a home and reduce upfront costs proved successful in 2016, with the government announcing a ban on letting fees for tenants in the Autumn Statement of that year. This came only a few days after Liberal Democrat peer Olly Grender's Renters’ Rights Bill was debated in parliament.

Our relentless campaigning to get tenants’ letting fees banned has finally paid off and the Government has recognised this is the right thing to do.

Olly Grender, 2016
Girls wearing head scarves

2015 - International aid spending enshrined in law

In 2015, Lib Dem MP Michael Moore's Private Member's Bill was passed overwhelmingly to enshrine in law the target for 0.7% of gross national income to be spent on international development aid. As a result, the UK is a world leader in international development, and billions more pounds have gone to help the world’s poorest people. Last year, the Conservative Government shamefully broke the 0.7% commitment, so Liberal Democrats are now fighting to restore it.

2015 - Revenge porn banned

Liberal Democrats led the campaign to ban revenge porn - the distribution of a private sexual image of someone without their consent, and with the intention of causing them distress. The campaign was a success with revenge porn elevated to a criminal offence, with sentences of up to two years in prison for those convicted.

A woman comforting a girl

2015 - First mental health waiting time targets introduced

Liberal Democrat Health Minister Norman Lamb introduced the first ever waiting time standards for mental health treatment, targeting talking therapy in as little as 6 weeks, with a maximum wait of 18 weeks, and treatment for first instances of psychosis guaranteed within 2 weeks of referral. This brought treatment targets  for mental health problems on par with physical health for the first time.

2014 - Free School Meals for all infants

Liberal Democrat Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and Schools Minister David Laws introduced free school meals for all infant pupils to help every child from every background get the best possible start in life, regardless of their family income. The move benefited children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2.

Universal free school meals will help give every child the chance in life that they deserve, building a stronger economy and fairer society.

Nick Clegg, 2013
Lib Dem Lynn Featherstone celebrates the passage same-sex marriage with activists

2014 - Same-sex Marriage

In March 2012, Liberal Democrat Equalities Minister Lynne Featherstone launched a consultation on how to introduce civil marriage for same-sex couples in England and Wales. The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill was introduced into Parliament on 24 January 2013 and became law in July 2013. On 29 March 2014, the first same-sex couples were married.

2014 - Shared Parental Leave

In 2013, Liberal Democrat Minister Jo Swinson sought to give mums and dads the opportunity to share their parental leave. The Shared Parental Leave Regulations she introduced in 2014 allow parents to divide parental leave between them. Mothers and adopters have more flexibility to choose when they return to work and fathers and partners are able to spend more time bonding with their children during the precious early stages of their development.

Shared parental leave is good for children, good for families and good for equality.

Jo Swinson, 2019
Wind turbines

2012 - Green Investment Bank

Lib Dem Business Secretary Vince Cable led the formation of the Green Investment Bank, funding it with £3 billion of government money to invest in the successful transition to a low-carbon economy. Since its inception, it has avoided 222 tons of greenhouse gas emissions, equivalent to removing 3 million cars from the road, and generated enough renewable energy to supply more than 5 million homes.

2010-15 - Cracking down on tax avoidance

The Liberal Democrats led moves to clamp down on tax avoidance by the richest. Someone earning £1 million a year had to pay £381,000 more in tax than prior to the reforms. An extra £9 billion was raised each year as a result.

Nick Clegg speaks in front of a crowd holding sings campaigning for fairer taxes

2010-15 - Cutting tax for the poorest

When we were in government, the Liberal Democrats lifted 3.4 million of the lowest earners out of paying income tax altogether. By raising the personal allowance, we gave more than 26 million people an £825 tax cut. For the average family, this cut their income tax bill by over a third.

2011 - Ending detention of children for immigration purposes

The Liberal Democrats ended the previous Labour Government's practice of detaining children for immigration purposes. Overnight detention of children at Dungavel House, Yarl's Wood and Tinsley House was ended in 2011. A new centre, Cedars, which could accommodate 9 families for a maximum of 72 hours and was run by Barnardo’s, was opened in August 2011.

Royal marines

2011 - Armed Forces Covenant

The Armed Forces Act of 2011 created the requirement for an annual Armed Forces Covenant report to Parliament each year. This report sets out how the Government is supporting our Armed Forces, their families, and veterans in key areas such as healthcare, housing and education.

2011 - Pupil Premium

In April 2011, the Liberal Democrats introduced the Pupil Premium and the Service Premium, to help children who might otherwise fall behind at school. This gives schools an extra £2.4 billion a year to close attainment gaps for disadvantaged pupils and care leavers and to assist with the pastoral needs of children with parents in the armed forces.

A fairer society. That's what the Pupil Premium is for. Billions of pounds to stop poor children falling behind.

Nick Clegg, 2013

2011 - ID cards scrapped

Nick Clegg led the opposition to the Labour Government’s illiberal and expensive plans to force everyone to carry a government-issued ID card. He even said he’d go to jail to oppose the law if it was introduced. In Government, the Liberal Democrats scrapped the plans for ID cards altogether.

2010 - Pensions Triple Lock

We believe everyone should be able to afford a decent retirement when the time comes, so we introduced a ‘Triple Lock’ to protect the state pension, ensuring that it rises each year in line with inflation, earnings or 2.5% – whichever is highest. This guarantees that we will never again see pensions go up by just 75p, like they did under Labour in 2000.

Liberal Democrats celebrate victory in the Gurkha justice campaign

2009 - Gurkha settlement rights

On 29th April 2009, a Liberal Democrat motion that all Gurkhas - Nepalese soldiers who serve in the British Army - be offered an equal right of residence was passed, allowing Gurkhas who served before 1997 residence in the UK.

2005 - Blocking 90-day detention without charge

Liberal Democrat MPs voted down Tony Blair's proposal to allow police to hold suspects for 90 days without charge.

Ed Davey at Pride, wearing a t-shirt with the slogan "I abolished Section 28"

2003 - Section 28 repealed

Liberal Democrat MP Ed Davey moved the clause that repealed Section 28, a series of laws introduced by Margaret Thatcher's government that prohibited the "promotion of homosexuality" by local authorities, including teaching about same-sex relationships in schools.

1998 - Human Rights Act

Right from our founding, the Liberal Democrats campaigned to incorporate the European Convention on Human Rights into UK law, to allow us all to enforce our fundamental rights and freedoms in British courts.

The Human Rights Act does exactly that. It protects everyone’s right to a fair trial and to keep their private life private. It bans torture, slavery and forced labour. It ensures we have freedom of religion and expression. And it empowers every individual to challenge governments in court to uphold their rights.

We supported the Human Rights Act when it was passed, successfully defended it against the Conservatives’ attempts to repeal it when we were in Government, and are continuing to fight their renewed efforts to tear it up.

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