Monday, 23 June 2014

Midsummer Roundup

Midsummer Day (21st June) and the Summer Solstice are now behind us and, this year, we have enjoyed a fine spell of weather.  Unfortunately, England's football team did not figure in the World Cup.  A disappointing outcome but, as someone remarked on Twitter, there's always Wimbledon or the Test Matches.   Meanwhile, there is much of interest in the legal world.  Here are a few items:

Assisted Suicide:

On Wednesday 25th June, the Supreme Court will hand down judgments in:

R (on the application of Nicklinson and another) (AP) (Appellants) v Ministry of Justice (Respondent)
R (on the application of AM) (AP) (Respondent) v The Director of Public Prosecutions (Appellant)
R (on the application of AM) (AP) (Respondent) v The Director of Public Prosecutions (Appellant)

The hand-down will be streamed on Supreme Court Live and will then be made available on the Supreme Court's YouTube channel.   For an Earlier post on these matter see - December 2013 - Assisted Suicide: Appeals to the Supreme Court of the UK.

Youth Justice:

A Parliamentarian's Inquiry into the Operation and Effectiveness of the Youth Courts - chaired by Lord Carlile of Berriew QC - is stating that the Youth Justice System is failing children - Marilyn Stowe Blog 22nd June 2014.  The report argues that all lawyers should receive specialist training for this work - Law Society Gazette 19th June. The full report is here - 85 pages pdf.

Family Justice:

The President of the Family Division of the High Court is investigating whether some family cases might be heard in public - Marilyn Stowe blog 19th June.  The President's investigation may lead to a consultation later.

Freedom in Britain:

Head of Legal blog looks at the State of Freedom in Britain.  Here is an interesting report about an event held at the London School of Economics earlier this month.  Well worth reading. 

Religion and Belief:

Lady Hale - a Justice of the Supreme Court of the UK - addressed the Law Society of Ireland on Freedom of Religion and Belief.  In the speech, Her Ladyship discussed the controversial case of Bull v Hall [2013] UKSC 73.

Speech in Northern Ireland by Lord Neuberger:

Lord Neuberger has addressed a conference of the Bar Councils of Northern Ireland and Ireland.  Speech here.

Scotland - the march toward Independence:

From a general reading of the press, there is a feeling that the looking Referendum on Scottish Independence will be a close result.  The Scottish Government has published a draft of a first constitution for an independent Scotland - The Guardian 16th June. A good discussion of this may be seen at Katie Boyle: Scotland in Transition: the Scottish Government's proposed interim constitution and the Scottish Independence Bill

Joint Enterprise:

Parliament's Justice Committee has been following up on its earlier report on Joint Enterprise in criminal law.

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