1 April 2019 'Brexit, Parliament and The Rule of Law: extending Article 50 and implementing the Withdrawal Agreement'
This meeting considered the events leading up to 29 March and discussed Rule of Law challenges facing Parliament. The expert speakers for the meeting were:
•Professor Kenneth Armstrong, Professor of European Law at the University of Cambridge and Fellow of Sidney Sussex College
•Professor Charlotte O'Brien, University of York
•Swee Leng Harris, Head of Policy and Public Affairs, The Legal Education Foundation and Senior Policy Adviser, Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law, and,
•Dr Ronan Cormacain, Consultant Legislative Counsel
12 December 2018 'Parliament, The Withdrawal Agreement and The Rule of Law'
This meeting considered the Rule of Law issues that arose in relation to the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill. The expert speakers for the meeting were:
•Professor Paul Craig, Professor of English Law and Fellow of St. John's College, University of Oxford,
•Maya Lester QC, Barrister, Brick Court Chambers, part of the legal team in Wightman,
•Dr Brigid Fowler, Senior Researcher, the Hansard Society, and,
•Raphael Hogarth, Institute for Government
31 October 2018 'The Rule of Law Implications of the Use of Parliamentary Privilege'
The Bingham Centre convened an expert discussion to provide parliamentarians with an opportunity to discuss important topical issues concerning the rule of law implications of the use of parliamentary privilege. Attendees' contributions largely focused on whether discussion of the subject matter of an injunction by Members could be incompatible with the rule of law principles of legality and access to justice.
The expert speakers for the meeting were:
•Hugh Tomlinson QC, Matrix Chambers
•Oonagh Gay OBE, former Head of the Parliament and Constitution Centre, House of Commons
•Sir David Beamish KCB, former Clerk of the Parliaments
31 October 2018 'A Vision for Public Legal Education and The Rule of Law'
The Bingham Centre is a member of the Solicitor General's Public Legal Education (PLE) Committee and has been working with other civil society organisations to produce a vision statement that will inform the delivery of PLE across the UK, to ensure that all citizens are aware of their legal rights. This launched that vision, which can be read here.
The event comprised part of National Justice Week, a seven-day campaign led by the Bar Standards Board, Solicitors Regulation Authority and Chartered Institute of Legal Executives to give effect to the regulatory objective of increasing public understanding of the citizen's legal rights and duties. The group hopes that in celebrating and appraising the transformative effect of PLE, civil society and the education sector will be better equipped to improve the legal capability of everyone in our society.
The expert speakers for the meeting were:
•Victoria Speed, Joint Director of Pro Bono & CSR at BPP University
•Tom Franklin, Chief Executive of Young Citizens
•Robert Buckland QC MP, Solicitor General
•Amanda Finlay, Chair of the Board of Trustees, Law for Life
•Michael Olatokun FRSA, Bingham Centre Research Fellow in Citizenship
10 October 2018 'The Rule of Law Implications of the Withdrawal Agreement, the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill and the Political Declaration on the Future Relationship'
As the UK stands poised to leave the European Union at the end of March 2019, this meeting was convened to assist parliamentarians in grappling with the large number of complex political and constitutional questions that must be navigated in order to ensure that Brexit is compatible with principles of the Rule of Law. The meeting focused on the impact of the Brexit Agreements on citizens' rights, the role of the courts and Parliament, common rulebooks and Northern Ireland. The expert speakers for the meeting were:
•Professor Alison Young, Sir David Williams Professor of Public Law, University of Cambridge
•Dr Sylvia de Mars, Senior Lecturer in Law, University of Newcastle
•Sir Stephen Laws KCB QC, First Parliamentary Counsel 2006-2012
•Paul Hardy, Brexit Director DLA Piper, Senior Legal Adviser to the House of Lords EU Committee 2014-2017
The Bingham Centre has produced a report, The Withdrawal Agreement and the Political Declaration- A Preliminary Rule of Law Analysis, which details significant rule of law considerations ahead of the publication of the EU (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill.
9 October 2018 'The Contribution of Human Rights Defenders Worldwide to the Rule of Law'
To mark the 20th anniversary of the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, PBI UK, together with the All Party Parliamentary Human Rights Group (PHRG) and the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Rule of Law, hosted an interactive panel event to honour the work of human rights defenders and to reflect on the contribution of human rights defenders worldwide to the rule of law.
A panel of leading experts spoke including FCO Minister for Human Rights, Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon and Anders Kompass, Senior Swedish Diplomat, as well as human rights defenders from Guatemala and Nepal. The event was chaired by Rt Hon Dominic Grieve QC MP.
17 July 2018 'The Rule of Law Implications of the Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Bill'
The APPG considered the rule of law issues that arise in relation to the Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Bill (2017-2019). Max Hill QC, Dr Lindsey Bell and Corey Stoughton assessed the extent to which clauses 1-3 of the Bill give effect to core principles of the Rule of Law.
25 June 2018 'Current Challenges in Armed Conflict, and State Accountability in Urban Warfare'
The event encouraged MPs and Peers to apply the framework of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) when scrutinising the actions of the UK Government and its partners in situations of armed conflict. The expert panel speakers focused on civilian protection, detention and use of drones. Case studies of conflict in urban areas were used to illustrate the importance of IHL principles in modern warfare.
16 April 2018 The Data Protection Bill: What Do Rule of Law Principles Mean for AI and Data Processing?
The meeting provided MPs and Peers with an opportunity to discuss the application of rule of law principles to data gathering, sharing and processing, including using artificial intelligence (AI), under the Data Protection Bill. There was a particular focus on the potential risks and opportunities for the proposed 'framework for data processing by government' to undermine or reflect rule of law principles. Some attendees reflected on the exemption within the Bill for information processed for immigration processes and the understated potential for powers created under the legislation to be used in a national security context.
11 December 2017 Parliamentary Accountability of the Security and Intelligence Services
Convened in conjunction with the APPGs on Drones and Extraordinary Rendition. The meeting saw Members discuss the remit and achievements of the Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC). Several discussions focused on the differences between the powers of the ISC and those of Select Committees.
22 November 2017 Discussion with the UN Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers
This event was jointly held with the APPG on Human Rights and the Law Society of England and Wales. The expert speaker was Diego García-Sayán, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers.
The meeting was chaired by the Rt Hon Dominic Grieve QC MP.
15 November 2017 The UK's Risk of Complicity in Unlawful Acts
This event was convened in conjunction with the APPGs on Drones and Extraordinary Rendition. The meeting was chaired by the Rt Hon Kenneth Clarke QC MP and Lord Hodgson of Astley Abbotts.
9 October 2017 - Expert Working Group on the EU Withdrawal Bill 2017
On 9 October 2017, an Expert Working Group on the EU (Withdrawal) Bill and the Rule of Law was set up by the Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law, in partnership with UCL's Constitution Unit. Chaired by the Rt Hon Dominic Grieve QC MP, the group brings together 27 senior experts from both Houses of Parliament, legal practice, civil society and academia with a wide range of relevant experience to consider the implications of the Bill for the rule of law. The Group's purpose is to generate informed discussion about the most significant rule of law issues raised by the Bill in order to inform debates about it, and how it could be improved, in Parliament and among the wider public.
4 July 2017 - 2017 General Meeting and Rule of Law Questions for the Repeal Bill
- Draft Minutes for the 2017 General Meeting
- Report from 4 July 2017 Meeting on Rule of Law Questions for the Repeal Bill
27 March 2017 - The Role of the UN Universal Periodic Review in Assessing the UK's Human Rights Record
Convened in conjunction with the APPG on the United Nations, Parliamentary Human Rights Group and the British Group Inter-Parliamentary Union.
14 March 2017 - EU Law, the Investigatory Powers Act, and UK-EU Cross-Border Crime and Security Cooperation
- Report from 14 March 2017 Meeting on EU Law, the Investigatory Powers Act, and UK-EU Cross-Border Crime and Security Cooperation
30 November 2016 - Reasoned Discussion of the High Court's Decision in Miller and What Might Happen Next
Convened in conjunction with the UK Constitutional Law Association
- Report from the 30 November 2016 Meeting on Reasoned Discussion of the High Court's Decision in Miller and What Might Happen Next
On 27 October 2016, the Bingham Centre co-organised a workshop at Edinburgh Law School on 'Brexit and the British Bill of Rights', along with the Europa Institute and the Global Justice Academy of the University of Edinburgh, and the Human Rights Centre at Queen's University Belfast. A research paper edited by Dr Tobias Lock and Dr Tom Gerald Daly (University of Edinburgh) is available here and presents key themes from the workshop. The workshop was generously supported by the Thomas Paine Initiative.
24 October 2016 - How Can Brexit Be Done under the Rule of Law?
18 October - Rule of Law in Ethiopia
Convened in conjunction with the All-Party Parliamentary Human Rights Group
13 July 2016 - Challenges to Rule of Law in Iran
Held jointly with the APPG on Human Rights
5 July 2016 - 2016 AGM and The HRA and ECHR in the Devolved Nations
- Draft Minutes for 2016 Annual General Meeting
- 2016 Income and Expenditure Form (approved at AGM, subsequently signed)
- Report from 5 July 2016 Meeting on HRA ECHR and the Devolved Nations
10 May 2016 - Doing good business: challenges of corruption and accountability
Held jointly with the APPG on Anti-Corruption
10 March 2016 - Meeting with Chinese Lawyers
Held jointly with the APPG on Human Rights and APPG on China
2 February 2016 - The Death of the Human Rights Act, the Birth of a New Constitutional Settlement?
- Report from 2 February 2016 Meeting on The Death of the Human Rights Act, the Birth of a New Constitutional Settlement?
8 December 2015 - Investigatory Powers: Legal privilege and the 'double lock'
Joint Meeting of the APPG on the Rule of Law and APPG on on Legal and Constitutional Affairs
- Notes from the 8 December 2015 meeting on Investigatory Powers: Legal privilege and the 'double lock'
9 November 2015 - The Ministerial Code and International Rule of Law
20 October 2015 - Immigration Bill 2015 and the Rule of Law
Joint Meeting of the APPG on the Rule of Law and APPG on Migration
12 October 2015 - Roundtable with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Held jointly with the APPG on Human Rights and the APPG on the UN
14 July 2015 - Non-Violent Extremism and the Rule of Law
8 July 2015 - Roundtable with Ucha Nanuashvili, Public Defender (Ombudsman) of Georgia
Held jointly with the APPG on Human Rights
3 June 2015 - Inaugural Election of Officers