Role and Powers of the Scottish Parliament
Role and Powers of the Scottish Parliament Parliament is the highest governmental authority in Britain. The MSP's, elected by the public, are responsible for checking the work of Government. They examine, debate and approve new laws. The main function of the Scottish Parliament is that they hold the Scottish Executive to account through oral and written questions and through scrutiny of its policies within their committees. Parliament introduces new laws on devolved matters by examining, amending and voting on Bills. They debate on important topical issues, conduct enquiries and publish reports. The Scottish Parliament also has the power to raise or lower the basic rate of income tax by up to 3 pence in the pound. Parliament has two main authorities, Devolved and Reserved. "Devolution is the delegation of power from a central government to local bodies"1 Devolved power deals with matters such as health, education and prisons. These issues were previously dealt with by the parliament at Westminster and are now decided in Scotland. Reserved power deals with political decisions. These major decisions are likely to have a considerable impact both within the UK and internationally. They are reserved and dealt with at Westminster in London. Devolution is the delegation of power from a central government to local bodies. Scotland was granted devolution by the passing of the
The Human Rights Act 1998 places the courts in effective control of the British constitution. It could now be described as a 'legal' rather than a 'political' constitution"
"The Human Rights Act 1998 places the courts in effective control of the British constitution. It could now be described as a 'legal' rather than a 'political' constitution" Discuss, using recent caselaw to illustrate your answer. Since the incorporation of the Human Rights Act into UK law, there has been much controversy as to whether the courts have too much input in parliamentary matters. There is also the question of whether the judiciary should not be allowed to exercise this influence since they are not an elected body like the government. This essay will examine the extent to which the courts "control" the constitution, and whether they have removed power from parliament meaning that it is now more legally based. The Human Rights Act 1998 gives greater effect to the Convention Rights which the UK signed in 1953. The vertical aspect of the act means that UK courts can now deal with disputes between the public and the state, instead of having to refer the case to the European Court of Human Rights. The courts have not always had such of influence in parliamentary matters however. The Brind 1991i case illustrates how the Secretary of State was not obliged to take notice of Article 10 of the convention, as it had not officially become part domestic law. Lord Woolf said, in discussion of the effect of making the Convention part of domestic law, "It is already obvious that
The application of common standards necessarily treats people differently, privileging some and penalising others. Thus it becomes an imposition of homogeneity, not an acceptance of difference. Discuss
Introduction Common standards are applied, not just within the United Kingdom, but across the world in the form of human rights. Both of these sets of standards, however, necessarily treat people differently. The law and rights centre on the idea of equality for everyone, without realising that this in an impossible goal, and, most importantly, without recognising that our differences should be celebrated, not condemned. True equality cannot exist unless our differences are understood and embraced; without it we are all compared and likened to the western, wealthy male. Common Standards: International Human Rights Internationally, regarding so called human rights as a common standard across the world, the western world could be said to receive fulfilment of these rights, although not because of these rights but in spite of them. However, those in Africa and the rest of the developing world do not receive any rights, not just because they are poor but because they were born into those countries and into those conditions. A South African during the apartheid regime or a political dissident in China today could correctly claim that they have 'the right not to be discriminated against'. However, no such right exists: 'right' refers to a claim about what morality demands, not what is legally enforceable.1 Human rights claim to create common standards that unify everyone;
Doctrine of essential features of a constitution
One step forward, three steps back. A critical analysis of the doctrine of core values of a constitution in Mike Campbell and Another v Minister of Lands and Another1 By Tazorora TG Musarurwa2 Introduction On 14 January 2008 I entered for the first time the court-room of the Supreme Court of Zimbabwe. On this day I was scheduled to be in Pretoria to begin my LLM studies at the University of Pretoria but I had refused to forego the opportunity of a debut appearance before the highest court in the land. As a young legal practitioner I had decided to utilise every opportunity that came before me which advanced my career. Even though the matter was a pro deo (where the attorney charges no fees) one, the prospect of winning my first Supreme Court case was worth more than any money I could have been paid. As I entered the courtroom I was surprised as it was rather small and fell short of what I had expected as a 'supreme' court. Nonetheless, I took my seat by the bar and was informed by the orderly that my case was the second of two cases that were to be heard that day. Just after 1000hrs we all rose as the court orderly had ordered and the three Supreme Court judges entered the court and took their respective seats. It was my first time to set eyes on the honourable Malaba JA as before I had only read his name from the law reports. It is interesting to be able to put a face to
Twentieth century Britain saw the immigration and full or partial integration of a variety of different ethnic minorities. Ethnic minority is defined as any group "whose members see themselves as sharing certain cultural characteristics, such as a common history, language, religion, or family or social values which distinguish them from the majority of the population." The sets of factors that hindered or encouraged integration of these groups overlap to a considerable extent. Yet, due to the special characteristics of the distinct ethnic minorities - their social, cultural and economic make-up and the different times at which they arrived - each of these groups also experienced peculiar difficulties and/or advantages with respect to integration. A recent study carried out by the home office in regard to policing British minority ethnic communities, concluded that there is a tendency for black and Asian communities to receive poor and derogatory treatment by the police and that ethnic minority communities are also considered to be suspect societies. Also, despite evidence of police racism, it still seems the case, that conflict between the police and Asian people has been different to that of African/Caribbean people. Studies from the 1970s to the present show that when Asians come into contact with the police, whether as victims or witnesses, their experiences, in terms of
Critically assess whether the reforms proposed by the draft Constitutional Convention on the Future of Europe will satisfy the objectives of the Laeken Declaration.
ROBERT GORDON UNIVERSITY ABERDEEN BUSINESS SCHOOL EUROPEAN UNION LAW Critically assess whether the reforms proposed by the draft Constitutional Convention on the Future of Europe will satisfy the objectives of the Laeken Declaration BY CHRISTINE BYRES WC. 2492 EUROPEAN UNION COURSEWORK INTRODUCTION The E.U Leaders adopted the Declaration at their meeting in Laeken. This meeting was necessary in hopes to identify some of the key questions that must be considered during the next stage of treaty reform and institutional reform. It was in December 2001 that the Laeken Declaration was issued at the end of the Belgian Presidency of the European Union. It set out ambitious tasks for a Convention. The Laeken Declaration helped to establish proposals for the convention "for the reform of the E.U." There are three concerns that the declaration deals with: "1. Europe at a Crossroads; 2. Challenges and Reforms in a Renewed Union; 3. Convention on the future of Europe."1 . EUROPE AT A CROSSROADS For many centuries, the people and the states have engaged in arms and waged war to succeed for command of the European continent. The devastating effect of having two wars and the fact that the Europe's position was weakening in the world brought an increasing awareness that the only way to make Europe strong and united was to have peace. In order to drive out every bad
Human Rights Act
Critically asses if articles 8 to 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights allow the state too much latitude in their qualification to interfere with those rights. This essay will asses if articles 8 to 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights allows the the state too much freedom to intefere with their rights. It will do this by describing the Qualified, Absolute, and Limited Rights, and will then discuss Articles 8, in regards to the right for a private life, and Article 10, in view of the right to freedom of expression. It will then sum up whether or not the European Convention on Human Rights does or does not allow the state too much latitude to intefere. In 1950, representatives of all the Member States of the Council of Europe signed the European Convention on Human Rights. It was argued that collective security in human rights was as necessary as its military counterpart for the promotion and defence of "individual freedom, political liberty and the rule of law."1 The European Convention on Human Rights still remains, a result of its time and the worry of those who drafted it. As the European Convention on Human Rights was signed shortly after Second World War and during Cold War, the rights naturally were ways of protection for predominantly civil and political rights, as apposed to social or economic. Clear examples of the kind of rights protected by the
In human rights there is no right which is more fundamental than others. Discuss.
In human rights there is no right which is more fundamental than others. Discuss. Human rights can generally be defined as "those rights, which are inherent in our nature and without which we cannot live as human beings."1 However, such a general definition poses a number of questions regarding whose 'nature' is to be used as a yardstick in establishing a list of such rights. It is likely that human rights find their origin in natural law. Natural law theorists had developed the idea that human beings are endowed with certain inalienable rights. According to "[t]his theory a natural order exists in the universe ... [e]verything has its own qualities and is subject to the rules of nature to achieve its full potential."2 Hence, anything that prevents a person from achieving his full potential is contrary to this higher order. Today human rights are largely protected through national constitutions and through various international conventions, treaties, charters, and declarations. The brief for this assignment calls for an examination on whether their exist any distinguishing criteria between human rights. I propose to base my discussion, in the main, on the text of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, that is the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR)3. One frequently reads that all rights are equal or interdependent. Thus, it
What effect does a concern for cultural diversity have upon justifying universal human rights?
What effect does a concern for cultural diversity have upon justifying universal human rights? It is common knowledge in the world over that we now have multi cultural societies, with everyone having different views on what is morally right or wrong, supporting different religions and ideologies. These differences of opinion and differences in society are what makes our world such a richly fascinating and diverse place to be. However in having this cultural diversity, are our human rights less valid and do universal human rights infringe upon cultural diversity, can we justify universal human rights if there is cultural diversity? This is a common concern when talking about universal human rights, and is something that I will be discussing throughout the course of this essay. Firstly it is important to understand exactly what human rights are and who has them. The answer is simple according to philosophy, all persons (a person is defined as somebody who is self conscious) have human rights whether they are aware of it or not. Human rights have been defined by Nickel (1992:561-2) as 'basic moral guarantees that people in all countries and cultures allegedly have simply because they are people... Human rights are frequently held to be universal in the sense that all people have and should enjoy them, and to be independent in the sense that they exist and are available as
Human Rights Safe in Australia - Whose Rights?
HUMAN RIGHTS SAFE IN AUSTRALIA - WHOSE RIGHTS "A bill of rights is what the people are entitled to against every government on earth, general or particular, and what no just government should refuse, or rest on inferences"1 I INTRODUCTION Australia is somewhat a strange and nonsensical oddity in the world today. As a nation that has championed the cause of fundamental human rights,2 and was one of the original drafters of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,3 it has consistently failed to equally guarantee the protection of those very same rights for its own people.4 Despite being a signatory to all human rights treaties, Australia stands today as the only western democracy in the world without a Bill of Rights,5 a failing that has permitted repeated breaches of fundamental freedoms committed under the 'lawful' authority of government policy and legislation.6 This paper will briefly outline the case for an Australian Bill of Rights and echoes the call of many people who recognize the current system is vastly inadequate.7 II WHO NEEDS PROTECTING? Rights protection for white, upper-middle class male conservatives has generally been assured throughout Anglo-Australian history, because they have almost exclusively occupied the strongest positions of political, legal and social power; including the drafting and judicial oversight of the Australian Constitution and