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Lords questions leading human rights barristers on impact of repeal of human rights law


Continuing with its inquiry into the impact on EU law of a UK decision to repeal the Human Rights Act, the House of Lords EU Justice Sub-Committee will have the opportunity to question a former Lord Chief Justice and a former judge of the European Court of Justice, on Tuesday 10 November.

The Committee is investigating the consequences of the Government's proposal to repeal the Human Rights Act (HRA) and replace it with a "British Bill of Rights", in order to inform both the political and public debate.

At 11am, the Committee will speak to:

  • Lord Woolf, who, when he was Lord Chief Justice, spoke out against the Constitutional Reform Bill, and was critical of the Government's handling of constitutional reforms; and
  • Sir David Edward, Professor Emeritus at the University of Edinburgh's School of Law and former Judge of the European Court of Justice.

The witnesses are likely to face questions on a number of areas, including whether the EU Charter and the common law would provide equivalent national protection to the HRA, or if there would be gaps that the Bill of Rights should cover; if a repeal of the HRA would put the UK in direct conflict with other areas of EU law and, if so, which ones in particular; whether they believe there would be increased court references to the Court of Justice from the UK Courts in the case of a repeal; and to what extent they believe that international courts are incompatible with Parliamentary sovereignty.

The evidence session will take place on Tuesday 10 November, at 11am in Committee Room 3 of the House of Lords.

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