My feed

to access all these features

Feminism: Sex & gender discussions

Guess which country has failed to sign?

17 replies
OP posts:
vadrouille · 20/05/2011 16:14


OmicronPersei8 · 20/05/2011 19:23

I saw something about this on the news yesterday. I'd also be interested to hear what people think of the convention. It was certainly an interesting juxtaposition of stories with everything else yesterday.

RamblingRosa · 20/05/2011 21:32

I saw this too. Disgraceful.

meditrina · 20/05/2011 21:38

What is the status of a CofE Convention? I thought they were not binding.

Also, which parts of this convention are not already enshrined in UK law?

Thistledew · 21/05/2011 08:59

Med- you are mostly right to say that such conventions are not binding, even if they are signed and ratified, but they are not completely useless. I will try and explain, apologies for simplifying somewhat:

The Euopean Comvention on Human Rights has been given direct effect in UK law through the Human Rights Act '98. This means that if your rights have been breached you can go to any court in the land for a remedy, whether in conjunction with a claim that another law has been breached or as a freestanding right.

Where a treaty does not have direct effect, it cannot act as a freestanding claim for a remedy, but if you have a case where a decision has been made by a public authority and you want to argue that the decision is not in accordance with the law, then you can point to the convention as a guide to how the law should be interpreted.

OP posts:
meditrina · 21/05/2011 09:02

I thought the Human Rights one was an EU convention (binding) not a CofE one (not binding) - but then again I easily get lost in Europe's Kafakaesque bureaucracy!

meditrina · 21/05/2011 09:05

Oh, and Thistledew, I did skim this convention but am far from expert on existing provisions in UK law. Could you be kind and give a definite list of the bits which are not already covered? Thanks!

Thistledew · 21/05/2011 09:07

It is a European Convention, but it is not for that reason that it is binding. The Council of Europe convention on trafficking is binding, but also does not have direct effect.

OP posts:
Thistledew · 21/05/2011 09:15

None of the provision, as far as I am aware, are enshrined in law in the exact terns as set out here. Considering whether we have similar terms in our legislative provisions already would could be an interesting topic for a research degree- and not something I am willing to give up my weekend for! Sorry! Smile

OP posts:
meditrina · 21/05/2011 09:19

I know the Council of Europe is completely separate from the European Union.

But I do get a bit lost after that.

Is there a good on-line guide which explains it all?

meditrina · 21/05/2011 09:21

And I didn't expect you to give up any research time to the question of gaps! I just thought you might know - as it does make a difference whether we're talking about symbolism or if there are also gaps in British legislation which need attention.

SardineQueen · 21/05/2011 09:31

If it's not binding and it doesn't mean anything, then the UK being the one country to refuse to sign looks as if our government are making a definite point, that they do not support what this stands for.

Which is a bit worrying.

Have the govt given any reason why they did not sign?

Thistledew · 21/05/2011 09:33

There are gaps. But it is also more of a question of interpretation of the existing laws we have. For instance, article 31 could affect how custody and contact disputes are decided. At present, violence against the mother is usually thought irrelevant to whether the father is permitted contact with the child. Quite how much force the provision that this must be 'taken into account' will have is not clear, but it may make it easier to argue that the negative emotional effect on the woman and children that having contact with an abuser must be given greater weight.

OP posts:
Thistledew · 21/05/2011 09:35

Sardine- there were other countries that also did not sign, so we are not alone. I have not seen any statement of why the UK did not.

OP posts:
SardineQueen · 21/05/2011 09:45

Oh I see. I still think that the govt should give a reason for not signing.

Thistledew · 21/05/2011 09:48

I think so too. It obviously shows how far womens rights are up thier agenda.

OP posts:
MisterDarsey · 21/05/2011 10:11

The UK also didn't want to sign the new EU law (directive) on human trafficking, and only did so following a campaign and petition.

Apparently they just hate doing anything that "Europe" has asked them to do.

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.