Lord Bracadale has been appointed by the Scottish Ministers to undertake an independent review of hate crime legislation in Scotland.
The Scottish Human Rights Commission is recruiting a Legal Officer to join their Strategy and Legal team. This is a permanent, full time position (37 hours per week) based in Edinburgh.
The post-holder will deliver professional and effective legal advisory and support services to the Commission, as well as develop and lead the Commission’s work in relation to its statutory legal functions of interventions in civil proceedings and conducting of inquiries.
Applications close at 24 April 2017. Interviews: 11 May 2017.
The government published a white paper on Brexit legislation in March 2017. The paper covered 12 key themes, including:
- Trade: the UK is to come out of the single market and seek a new arrangement and free trade agreement with the EU.
- Immigration: a new system to control EU migration will be introduced.
- Expats: the government wants to secure an agreement with European countries on the rights of EU nationals in the UK and Britons living in Europe.
- Devolution: giving more powers to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland as decision-makers.
The government also included details of its Great Repeal Bill, designed to repeal the 1972 European Communities Act and give Parliament the power to adopt parts of EU legislation into UK law.
Responses from EDF Associates
Liberty, March 2017
“This white paper has gaping holes where our rights should be. Where’s the guarantee to protect our EU rights so we don’t end up worse off than our neighbours across the Channel? Where’s the guarantee of proper democratic scrutiny?” – Martha Spurrier, Director of Liberty
Responses from EDF Observers
EHRC, March 2017
“The government should use this golden opportunity to strengthen our own laws as we leave EU laws behind, including by introducing a constitutional right to equality that will make post-Brexit Britain fairer and more united.” – Chair David Isaac
The Human Rights Consortium Scotland (HRCS) published a collection of Scottish civil society perspectives on the potential impact of Brexit in March 2017.
Each chapter was written in early 2017 and outlined the organisation’s key concerns around the ways in which Brexit may affect the everyday, essential rights of those that they work with.
Contributors included Amnesty International, Disability Agenda Scotland, Engender, the Equality Network, and the SCVO.
Applications are open for the Scottish Government’s Equality Unit Promoting Equality and Cohesion Fund. Submissions close on 17 March 2017.
Funding is for projects that work with, or on behalf of, people who are disadvantaged due to protected characteristics covered by the Equality Act 2010: age, disability, gender (sex), gender identity/ reassignment, race, religion or belief, and sexual orientation.
The value of the PECF 2017-20 is likely to be approximately £2.5 million per annum.
The Scottish Parliament Information Centre published a briefing on the impact of Brexit on equalities and human rights in October 2016.
The briefing considers the impact Brexit will have on equalities and human rights. The focus is on legislation which has a basis in EU law, the protections currently offered, and what this could mean in the future.
The Scottish Government published its Fairer Scotland action plan in October 2016. It outlines 50 actions to help tackle poverty, reduce inequality and build a fairer and more inclusive Scotland.
The plan is built on five high level ambitions that the Government will focus on in the period to 2030:
- A FAIRER SCOTLAND FOR ALL
- ENDING CHILD POVERTY
- A STRONG START FOR ALL YOUNG PEOPLE
- FAIRER WORKING LIVES
- A THRIVING THIRD AGE
The Equality and Human Rights Commission in Scotland noted that they are “particularly pleased to note the commitments to equality in employment, including greater flexible working and ending pregnancy discrimination, bullying in schools, domestic abuse and kinship carers – all issues that we have highlighted”.
The Equality and Human Rights Commission published its 2015/16 annual report for Scotland in September 2016.
The annual report of the Commission’s work undertaken in 2015/16 shows how the Commission works on its mandate to ensure that equality and human rights are a reality for everyone in Scotland both now and in future years.
Close the Gap is a partnership project working in Scotland on women’s participation in the labour market. The project works with employers, employees and policymakers to enable and encourage action to address the causes of women’s inequality at work.
The Scottish Government is consulting on proposals for a Child Poverty Bill. The proposals include:
- Enshrining in legislation the ambition to eradicate child poverty
- Reinstating statutory income-based targets to reduce the number of children living in poverty
- Placing a duty on Scottish Ministers to develop a Child Poverty Delivery Plan, and to report on annually on their progress towards delivering that plan.
The consultation opened on 8 August and closed on 30 September 2016.