What Human Rights do for Justice - RightsInfo

What Human Rights do for Justice

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TOP 50
50 Cases
1996
Europe

You can’t be sent to a real risk of torture

Related European Convention Articles

The deportation of a Sikh separatist to the Punjab where he would more than likely face torture due to his political beliefs and actions, was prohibited. The Court emphasised that everyone is protected from torture, even suspected terrorists.

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    TOP 50
    50 Cases
    2008
    Europe

    Police can’t keep DNA of acquitted people forever

    Related European Convention Articles

    The police were taking DNA profiles of individuals arrested for recordable offences, even if people were acquitted. They wanted the samples destroyed. The Court found the policy and refusal to destroy the samples was a violation of the applicants' right to respect for private life.

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    TOP 50
    50 Cases
    2012
    Europe

    Everyone has protection from torture and unfair trial, including terrorists

    Related European Convention Articles

    Abu Qatada was at risk of being prosecuted using evidence obtained by torture, contrary to his to a fair trial. He was eventually deported after Jordan amended its constitution to stop the use of torture evidence.

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    TOP 50
    50 Cases
    UK
    2001

    You can’t be detained without medical proof of why

    Related European Convention Articles

    If you’re detained by the state because you are mentally ill, the reason for your detention must be regularly reviewed. It wasn't for detained mental health patients to demonstrate why they should be released - the treating clinicians should have to justify continuing detention. The law was later changed.

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      Justice
      2013
      UK

      A criminal defendant had to take her veil off to give evidence in court

      Related European Convention Articles

      A female defendant in a criminal case did not want to take off her face veil in front of men who were not in her family. The judge ruled she must take it off to give evidence and be identified.

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      Justice
      2013
      UK

      European Union law doesn’t give prisoners the right to vote

      Related European Convention Articles

      Two prisoners claimed that not having a right to vote was in conflict with their rights under European Union law (which is separate from European Convention law). The UK Supreme Court disagreed.

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      TOP 50
      50 Cases
      2012
      Europe

      “Whole life” sentences must be reviewable

      Related European Convention Articles

      Three murderers argued that their life sentences with no hope of a review and reduction was inhuman. The court agreed, but found that none of the prisoners' sentences should be reduced. The case was later overturned: the UK's whole life sentences don't breach human rights

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      TOP 50
      50 Cases
      1772
      UK

      Slavery is odious

      Related European Convention Articles

      A slave escaped then was imprisoned by his "master" on a ship bound for Jamaica, where he would be sold. Lord Mansfield ordered his release and said there was no support for slavery in English law: "The state of slavery...is so odious, that nothing can be suffered to support it". A key moment for the abolition movement.

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      Justice
      2011
      UK

      Retention of DNA evidence by police is unlawful

      Related European Convention Articles

      Two people who had been charged with a crime but later acquitted complained that the Police where still holding onto their DNA. They won. Guidelines which say that DNA evidence can only be destroyed in "exceptional circumstances" must be subject to their right to privacy.

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      Children
      1995
      Europe

      Parents can access info related to their child’s case

      Related European Convention Articles

      Parents of a child taken into care were not allowed to see documents referred to at a hearing to determine care provisions and access to their son. This breached their rights to a fair hearing and respect for family life.

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        Disability
        2003
        Europe

        People with mental illness must be able to challenge their detention

        Related European Convention Articles

        A detained man with an untreatable mental illness was refused discharge. His right to challenge the lawfulness of his detention was breached by delayed review and making him prove he should no longer be detained.

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          Justice
          2015
          UK

          Victims of domestic violence are entitled to police protection

          Related European Convention Articles

          A woman's family claimed against the police because they had not responded to her calls for help when threatened by her extremely violent and threatening ex-boyfriend. He killed her. They won their case.

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          Justice
          2012
          Europe

          The UK is not doing enough to combat domestic slavery

          Related European Convention Articles

          A Ugandan woman was forced to work, without breaks or time off, as a live-in carer for an elderly couple. She won her case as the UK had failed to provide proper protection against slavery and forced labour. The European Court criticised the fact that the UK does not have a specific law criminalising domestic slavery and human trafficking. This case led to the Modern Slavery Bill 2014-15.

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          TOP 50
          50 Cases
          2005
          Europe

          You can’t ban every prisoner from voting

          Related European Convention Articles

          A blanket ban on prisoners voting, without regard to the gravity of the crime, or individual circumstances, breaches the fundamental principle of free and fair elections. And it undermines democracy.

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            Disability
            2012
            Europe

            The police must protect vulnerable people from unnecessary detention

            Related European Convention Articles

            A man was detained by the police for four days when he urgently needed psychiatric care. He got damages as this was an affront to human dignity and amounted to degrading treatment.

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              Justice
              2012
              Europe

              Abu Hamza and others can be extradited to the US

              Related European Convention Articles

              Abu Hamza and four others, wanted for terrorist activities in the US, can be deported regardless of their argument that doing so would mean they would likely receive extremely long sentences in "super-max" prisons which could amount to inhuman and degrading treatment.

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              Disability
              2012
              Europe

              Mrs Reynolds got compensation after her son died in psychiatric care

              Related European Convention Articles

              A mother complained that she had no access to compensation for the grief and distress caused by the untimely death of her son whilst he was in psychiatric care. She was awarded damages for violation of the right to a remedy and the right to life.

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                Health
                2009
                Europe

                Prison medical officers can’t interfere in private correspondence

                Related European Convention Articles

                The applicant served his prison sentence after suffering a brain haemorrhage and was required to attend hospital for every six months. He complained that the prison medical officer read his medical correspondence. The Court agreed this was an unjust interference with his right to correspondence.

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                Justice
                2012
                Europe

                You can’t be imprisoned indefinitely without a chance of getting out

                Related European Convention Articles

                An "indeterminate" prison sentence means people can be in prison forever unless they demonstrate they are safe for release. But that meant they needed to be given reasonable opportunity to prove they had become safe for release.

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                Disability
                2005
                Europe

                Detention for mental health patients must be reviewed quickly

                Related European Convention Articles

                A woman was detained in hospital for over a year after the Mental Health Review Tribunal directed her conditional release. Her right to liberty entitled her to have the lawfulness of that detention determined by a court promptly.

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                  TOP 50
                  Justice
                  2004
                  UK

                  You can’t detain foreigners without charge forever

                  Related European Convention Articles

                  After 9/11, the government started imprisoning suspected terrorists indefinitely without a criminal charge or conviction. This breached the right to liberty. We ended this practice of detention without trial.

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                  Health
                  2002
                  Europe

                  Authorities must consider carefully detention of seriously ill prisoners

                  Related European Convention Articles

                  The applicant's continued detention whilst his health was deteriorating breached the State's duty to protect prisoners from distress or hardship beyond that which you would normally expect in prison.

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                  Health
                  2003
                  Europe

                  Governments must look after ill people in prison

                  Related European Convention Articles

                  A heroin addict died in prison, having suffered severe withdrawal symptoms. Her children complained of inhuman and degrading treatment. The Court agreed and held states to be under a duty to ensure detainees were held in conditions compatible with human dignity.

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                  Justice
                  UK
                  2013

                  The media can disclose identity of triple murderer

                  Related European Convention Articles

                  A convicted child murderer challenged a decision to allow the media to report details of his offence. He argued that this resulted in threats and attacks which threatened his right to life, and freedom from degrading treatment. He lost as the public interest in knowing these facts outweighed his concerns.

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                  What Human Rights do for Justice
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