published: March 2021
In December 2020, the Government announced an independent review to examine the framework of the Human Rights Act 1998 (the “HRA”), how it is operating in practice and whether any change is required (the Independent Human Rights Act Review).
The Review is focused on two themes:
- the relationship between the domestic courts and the European Court of Human Rights; and
- the impact of the HRA on the relationship between the judiciary, the executive and the legislature
JUSTICE have submitted a response to the Review’s Call for Evidence. Our response was shaped by an advisory group, chaired by Sir Michael Tugendhat and comprised of the following members:
- Professor Brice Dickson, Queen’s University Belfast;
- Tessa Gregory, Partner, Leigh Day LLP;
- Dominic Grieve QC, Temple Garden Chambers;
- Raza Husain QC, Matrix Chambers;
- Jennifer McDermott, former head of Media and Public Law at Withers LLP, Addleshaw Goddard LLP and Hogan Lovells LLP;
- Jonathan Moffett QC, 11KBW;
- Christine O’Neill QC, Partner and Chairman of Brodies LLP; and
- Alison Young, Sir David Williams Professor of Public Law, University of Cambridge.
In our response we highlighted that despite the diverse experience of our advisory group members, there is a strong consensus that the HRA in its current form functions very well. The HRA is a well-crafted delicately balanced piece of legislation. It enables the courts to give effect to and protect the rights of individuals whilst maintaining Parliamentary sovereignty and the balance between the different branches of Government.