What Human Rights do for Justice - RightsInfo

What Human Rights do for Justice

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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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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
2001
UK

We’ve a right to private legal correspondence, even in jail

Related European Convention Articles

Prisoners have a right to private correspondence with their lawyers. Prison officers were reading prisoners' letters before them and without them being present. This breached their human right to privacy.

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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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    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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    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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      TOP 50
      50 Cases
      1975
      Europe

      Prisoners must be able to contact their solicitors

      Related European Convention Articles

      A prisoner was stopped from writing a letter to his solicitor. He wanted to make make a libel claim against a prison guard. He won his case. Not being allowed to contact a solicitor was a violation of the right to fair trial.

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        TOP 50
        50 Cases
        1995
        Europe

        The security services can’t shoot to kill without good reason

        Related European Convention Articles

        The SAS shot dead IRA members in Gibraltar. They suspected the men of planning a terrorist attack. The court criticised the planning of the attack. There were other options apart from shooting to kill.

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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
            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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            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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            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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              Justice
              1990
              Europe

              Long-term prisoners must have their sentences regularly reviewed

              Related European Convention Articles

              Two prisoners with life sentences claimed that they should have the right to have their claim periodically reviewed. They won - after a certain period, the right to liberty ensures that a sentence must be periodically reviewed.

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                Justice
                2012
                UK

                Sole carer mothers in prison should usually get childcare leave

                Related European Convention Articles

                Mothers who are sole carers of their children and are within two years of their release date should sometimes be given child care leave, allowing them to spend up to three days a week with their children. The prison authorities had been acting too inflexibly.

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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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                TOP 50
                50 Cases
                1989
                Europe

                Risk of inhuman death row conditions stopped this man’s extradition

                Related European Convention Articles

                A German man faced extradition to the US on charges of murder, an offence that potentially carries the death penalty.The risk of the inhuman conditions of death row stopped his extradition.

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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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                    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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                      Justice
                      1996
                      Europe

                      Being effectively defended by a lawyer is fundamental to a fair trial

                      Related European Convention Articles

                      John Murray had been arrested in Ireland on suspicion of terrorism. The case was primarily about the right to remain silent, but the court used it as an opportunity to reiterate that proper access to a lawyer is a fundamental element of the right to a fair trial.

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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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                        Justice
                        2014
                        UK

                        Everyone deserves access to justice – that means legal aid where necessary

                        Related European Convention Articles

                        In this decision, the right to legal aid is discussed by the court. It is established that in some cases, in order for access to justice to be achieved, legal aid must be granted when there would be an obvious unfairness.

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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
                          2011
                          Europe

                          Even the Army can’t imprison without charge forever

                          Related European Convention Articles

                          Mr Al-Jedda was suspected of terrorism. He was detained by British forces in Iraq for over three years without charge or trial. This breached his human rights, even though it happened abroad.

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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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                          What Human Rights do for Justice
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