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Lessons from the South African Constitutional Court: a duty of care for police in England and Wales?

Lessons from the South African Constitutional Court: a duty of care for police in England and Wales?

Last month at the inquest of Rachael Slack, a 38 year-old woman stabbed to death by her ex-partner, the jury ruled that police failures had contributed ‘more than minimally’ towards her death. The ruling has prompted calls for a public inquiry into what the coroner described as an ‘epidemic’ of domestic violence towards women and [...]

New Bill Shifts Focus to Survivors of Human Trafficking

New Bill Shifts Focus to Survivors of Human Trafficking

Earlier this year, I interviewed a group of young Bangladeshi men who had been trafficked into Scotland to work in the hotel services industry.  They had been deceived, abused, exploited and threatened into working under forced labour conditions, some of them for months, others for years. As they revealed the harrowing circumstances of their stories, [...]

Disenfranchising the Disenfranchised? – Appeal Rights in the Immigration Bill 2013

Disenfranchising the Disenfranchised? – Appeal Rights in the Immigration Bill 2013

The first immigration bill to be published in four years was introduced in the House of Commons on 10 October 2013. The long title – ‘… to limit … access to services, facilities and employment by reference to immigration status …’ – leaves us in no doubt about its intent. The appeals provisions (clauses 11 and [...]

Al-Jedda: Judicial Commitment to the Universal Application of the Right to a Nationality

Al-Jedda: Judicial Commitment to the Universal Application of the Right to a Nationality

The Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006 provides that the Secretary of State may, as a general rule, deprive an individual of British citizenship where she is satisfied that this would be conducive to the public good. However, this is subject to an exception: such deprivation of citizenship is not permitted where the Secretary of [...]

Waking Up On The Wrong Side Of The Bedroom Tax

Waking Up On The Wrong Side Of The Bedroom Tax

To politicians and lawyers, the ‘bedroom tax’ is just media shorthand for statutory rules relating to housing benefit reductions for under-occupancy of housing association property, ushered in by the Welfare Reform Act 2012. To the many individuals affected by the policy, however, it represents a loss of security which is much more personal and tangible. [...]

Humanitarian Intervention? – International Law and the Non-Use of Force in Syria

Humanitarian Intervention? – International Law and the Non-Use of Force in Syria

The UK House of Commons voted by a slim majority (13 votes) against UK involvement in direct military action in Syria. This refusal to endorse the use of force does more to protect human rights than would support for military engagement on the dubious ground of humanitarian intervention. The UK government’s official statement, published earlier [...]

Plenty of evidence to support the Public Sector Equality Duty

Plenty of evidence to support the Public Sector Equality Duty

The Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED) is a key feature of the Equality Act 2010 and an essential tool to achieve this legislation’s objectives of eliminating discrimination, advancing equality and fostering good relations in a society which, as highlighted by the 2011 Census, is becoming increasingly diverse. Nonetheless, the purpose and effectiveness of the duty [...]

Vinter v UK – Why The Majority Are Right To Find That Whole Life Orders Violate Article 3 ECHR

Vinter v UK – Why The Majority Are Right To Find That Whole Life Orders Violate Article 3 ECHR

The European Court of Human Rights’ recent decision in Vinter v UK will inevitably come under fire for infringing abstract notions of subsidiarity and the Court criticised for meddling in national affairs (see the prediction in Claire Overman’s blog post for the Oxford Human Rights Hub earlier this week). The present post outlines some of the [...]

John Eekelaar on the response to Abu Qatada’s deportation

John Eekelaar on the response to Abu Qatada’s deportation

It is depressing that some politicians are using the Abu Qatada case to denigrate our system for protecting human rights when we should be thankful that it has shown the high value the system places on justice and acceptance that use of evidence procured by torture is a denial of justice. In forcing a reluctant [...]

Equality v Human Rights?: Same sex marriage and religious liberty

Equality v Human Rights?: Same sex marriage and religious liberty

This is an edited transcript of an address given by Aidan O’Neill QC on Thursday 13 June 2013, at Matrix Chambers on ‘Same Sex Marriage and Religious Liberty’ Some 50 years ago, in the wake of the publication in 1957 of the Wolfenden report which advocated a decriminalization of same sex sexual acts, a public [...]

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A Quick Overview

Blog posts have been coming in thick and fast over the last month. To help you get up to speed, the editorial team has put together a quick summary of some of the major themes. Justice Verma Committee on Indian sexual violence laws The Justice Verma Committee submitted its report on the reform of India’s [...]