Dr Mark Butler
The European Court’s judgment in Kaltoft was handed down on 18th December 2014, and unsurprisingly, sits broadly in line with the Opinion of Advocate General Jaaskinen, which was handed down on 17th July 2014.
Read Siobhan’s blog via Lancaster University
Dr Claire Fitzpatrick
Are care leavers just more criminal? You might think so when you see them over-represented, year after year, in the criminal justice statistics. Would it be fair to think like this? Of course not! In reality, the situation is far from straightforward. This is certainly evident from current concerns (such as those raised by the House of Commons Justice Committee) over the unnecessary criminalisation of children in care for minor offences, their treatment in the youth justice system and their effective abandonment by local authorities as care leavers in the criminal justice system.
Prof Steven Wheatley
The Catalonia regional government has signalled its intention to go ahead with a vote on independence on 9 November despite the opposition of the central government in Madrid. The vote has been modified in light of restrictions imposed by the Spanish courts, and will now be organised by volunteers, without any formal electoral roll. The vote in Catalonia follows the referendum in Scotland (where the population voted ‘No’ to independence) and the hastily arranged and badly organized referendums in the Ukrainian regions of Donetsk or Luhansk (‘Yes’ to independence or greater autonomy – the question on the ballot is unclear) and Ukrainian region of Crimea (‘Yes’ to becoming a federal subject within the Russian Federation).
The fight for equality between on gender grounds has been one that has been ongoing for some time (the EU and the United Nations playing key roles), but there is clearly a lot that still needs to be done. The gender pay gap is clear evidence of this; female workers in the UK currently earning on average 19% less than their male counterparts. Although this is considered an ‘improvement’ from the historical context, this serves to highlight that we are still some way off achieving equality. This is exacerbated when one considers that workers in atypical and marginal employment relationships, for example part time workers, earn over 1/3 less per hour than their full time counterparts (according to the Office of National Statistics in 2012), and that many of these positions are filled by female workers. However, having recently watched over the HeForShe speech given by Emma Watson, and having endured the new bunch of “business leaders” on the Apprentice, it did get me thinking about gender equality in business, and this blog encapsulates those musings.
The Children and Families Act 2014 came into force six months ago today. The Act put into place some of the Family Justice Reforms that had long been discussed and debated. One of the major changes to family law was that residence and contact orders were replaced by child arrangement orders. Today section 11 of the Act comes into force and introduces a new presumption of ‘continued parental involvement’. The presumption only applies to family proceedings commenced after 22nd October 2014.
Professor Suzanne Ost writes in The Guardian about John Grisham’s comments about child abuse images.
Suzanne Ost’s other blog posts include ‘Now you see them now you don’t? The battle to block online child sexual abuse images‘ with Siobhan Weare (@SiobhanWeare), and ‘A right to die or a step too far? Assisted dying and being ‘tired of life’‘
Suzanne Ost (@SuzanneOst3737) is Professor of Law in the Law School at Lancaster. She researches in the areas of medical law and ethics and child sexual exploitation. She is the co-author of Medicine and Bioethics in the Theatre of the Criminal Process and is the Editor-in-Chief of the Medical Law Review.
You can find out more about Suzanne’s research at http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/fass/law/profiles/suzanne-ost