JCHR Press Notice 04-05 No. 7

Session 2004-05                            19 January 2005

Forthcoming Publication

Scrutiny: First Progress Report

The Committee's Fourth Report of Session 2004-05, Scrutiny: First Progress Report will be published on Monday 24 January 2005 at 10am, as House of Lords Paper 26/House of Commons Paper 224.

The Joint Committee on Human Rights examines every Bill presented to Parliament.  With Government Bills its starting point is the statement made by the Minister under section 19 of the Human Rights Act 1998 in respect of its compliance with Convention rights as defined in that Act.  However, it also has regard to the provisions of other international human rights instruments to which the UK is a signatory.

The Committee does not usually publish separate reports on each Bill which raises human rights questions, but publishes regular progress reports on its scrutiny of Bills, setting out any initial concerns it has about Bills it has examined and, subsequently, the Government's responses to these concerns and any further observations it may have on these responses.

This is the Committee's first scrutiny report of the 2004-05 Session.  In this report the Committee comments for the first time on the Serious Organised Crime and Police Bill, the Inquiries Bill, and the International Organisations Bill.  The Committee will return to give further consideration to each of these Bills in the light of responses from the Government to questions the Committee is putting in correspondence.  The Committee also reports its final views on the Mental Capacity Bill following responses by the Government to questions put previously by the Committee, and reports on the School Transport Bill.

In addition, the Committee uses this opportunity to publish the response from the Government to its Nineteenth Report of Session 2003-04, on the Children Bill, and letters it has received from Ministers responding to its reports on the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 (Specification of Particularly Serious Crimes) Order 2004, and the draft Criminal Justice Act 2003 (Categories of Offences) Order 2004.

This Report is part of the ongoing series of reports from the Committee which examines all Bills introduced to Parliament in respect of their compliance with Convention rights and other human rights instruments. 

The reports will be available from The Stationery Office (tel: 0870 600 5522), Parliamentary Hotline Lo-call 0845 7 023474, Email: book.orders@tso.co.uk, Internet: http://www.tso.co.uk/bookshop, TSO shops, The Parliamentary Bookshop, 12 Bridge Street, London SW1A 2JX (tel 020 7219 3890) and through good booksellers.  It will also be on the Committee's website from approximately 3pm on the day of publication.