11 November 2015

Parliamentary copyright images are reproduced with the permission of ParliamentThe British Institute of Human Rights (BIHR) has today written to the members of the newly established Joint Committee on Human Rights (JCHR) calling on the Committee to carefully consider the Government’s human rights reform proposals, when published. In the letter, BIHR calls upon the Committee to be active in upholding its essential roles of ensuring that government legislation and policy are scrutinised fully to ensure that they are compatible with fundamental human rights and investigating thematic areas where human rights are at risk.

This JCHR is made up of members of both Houses of Parliament and is responsible for ensuring that government policy and legislation are compliant with the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), the common law, and other international treaties to which the UK is party. The House of Lords members were appointed before the summer, however the House of Commons members were not appointed until the end of October. Harriet Harman has been elected Chair, and the Committee has initiated its first inquiry into the government’s policy on the use of drones for targeted killing. The Committee has also written to Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor, raising a number of issues relating to the Government’s position on human rights reform.

BIHR welcomes the reappointment of the JCHR, notes with interest and encouragement that it has already begun work on a number of important areas, and looks forward to working with the Committee over the course of this Parliament on human rights issues of shared concern.

For further information please contact Richard at rwingfield@bihr.org.uk or on 0207 882 5088.