Surely a right is a right, full stop? You may think it is strange that the Bill of Rights includes a clause (part) that allows for rights to be ‘limited’. But experience shows that this is needed in society, because people may have competing or conflicting rights.

For example, one person’s right to dignity may clash with another person’s right to freedom of expression. Does freedom of expression allow you to insult someone or a group? No, it does not. Citizens have the right to be protected from a person who is suspected of being a violent criminal. This conflicts with that suspect’s right to freedom of movement. In other words, the suspect can be held in jail.

However, the Bill of Rights sets out strict conditions for limiting rights. It says the limitation must be reasonable, and be done only for a very good reason.