Launch of the Independent Commission on UK Public Health Emergency Powers
The Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law is delighted to announce the launch of the 'Independent Commission on UK Public Health Emergency Powers' to review the UK's legislative framework and institutional arrangements, alongside Government decision-making during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The aim is that the Independent Commission's findings and recommendations will help to inform planning for future public health emergencies. More immediately, the Commission will make recommendations to inform the UK and Scottish Covid-19 public inquiries, as advocated by the House of Lords Constitution Committee. The Independent Commission will provide a legal and constitutional analysis of existing and alternative emergency public health laws, parliamentary procedures for responding to public health emergencies, and the ways in which emergency laws and public health guidance were made, scrutinised, utilised and disseminated during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Chair of the Independent Commission, Sir Jack, commented: "A robust legislative framework and searching parliamentary oversight procedures are essential to ensuring that the UK's response to public health emergencies is compatible with our commitment to the Rule of Law. I look forward to working with the distinguished group the Bingham Centre has brought to together to investigate and report on how best to secure them."distinguished group the Bingham Centre has brought to together to investigate and report on how best to secure them."
Twelve Commissioners have now been appointed to work alongside The Right Hon. Sir Jack Beatson FBA as Chair. The Commission brings together leading policy experts, practitioners, parliamentarians and academics working in the field. The Commissioners will be working in smaller groups to focus on key issues, including the legislative framework, parliamentary oversight of executive action, and international comparisons.
The Bingham Centre will be providing the Secretariat to the Independent Commission in line with the Commission's agreed Terms of Reference . The Bingham Centre's secretariat includes Lucy Moxham , Senior Research Fellow, and Katie Lines , Research Fellow at the Centre.
The vital work of the Independent Commission is being generously supported by the JRSST Charitable Trust , alongside other funders.
Further details can be found on the Commission's website