Constitutional Change in New Zealand (and a Bill of Rights for Britain?)
Wednesday 17 February, 2.00pm-3.45pm
New Seminar Room, St John’s College
The Rt Hon Sir Geoffrey Palmer
Former Prime Minister of New Zealand, Minister of Justice
and President of the Law Commission
Richard Ekins, St John’s College
The Government is soon to launch a public consultation about its plans to repeal the Human Rights Act 1998 and to replace it with a British Bill of Rights. The Human Rights Act was based in part on the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990. The architect of the 1990 Act was the Rt Hon Sir Geoffrey Palmer, one of New Zealand’s most influential constitutional commentators who has held office as Minister of Justice and Prime Minister of New Zealand and as President of the Law Commission. Sir Geoffrey will speak about the challenges and disappointments of the NZ Bill of Rights and about his recent proposal for more fundamental constitutional change. Richard Ekins will comment on Sir Geoffrey’s evaluation and proposaland the discussion will extend to lessons that the UK might learn in considering whether and how to reform its human rights law regime(s).