Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments Sixth Report


APPENDIX VII

First Memorandum by the Northern Ireland Office

PUBLIC ORDER (PRESCRIBED FORM) REGULATIONS (NORTHERN IRELAND) 1997 (S.R. 1997/235)

  The Committee has asked for a memorandum on the following point:

    Regulation 2 provides that advance notice of a public procession shall be given in the Form in the Schedule. What provision in Article 3 of the Public Order (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 authorises the making of this regulation?

  Article 3 of the Public Order (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (S.I. 1987/463 N.I.7) was amended by Article 3 of the Public Order (Amendment) (Northern Ireland) Order 1997 to provide that notice of a proposal to organise a public procession under paragraph (1) of the article is to be given in such form as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Secretary of State (see paragraph (2)). These Regulations prescribe the form for these purposes. Article 3(9), as amended by the 1997 Order, provides that such regulations are subject to the negative resolution procedure.

  It is regretted that the Regulations did not include in the footnote reference to Article 3(2) of the 1987 Order a reference to the fact that the paragraph had been amended by the 1997 Order.

23rd June 1997

Second Memorandum by the Northern Ireland Office

PUBLIC ORDER (PRESCRIBED FORM) REGULATIONS (NORTHERN IRELAND) 1997 (S.R. 1997/235)

  1. The Committee has asked for a memorandum on the following point:

  By the terms of the substituted provisions of Article 3 of the Public Order (Norther Ireland) Order 1987 a notice to the police about an intended public procession -

    (a)   must be given in a prescribed form; and

    (b)   must specify -

      (i)   the date and time when the procession is to be held;

      (ii)   its route;

      (iii)   the number of persons likely to take part in it;

      (iv)   the names of any bands which are to take part in it;

      (v)   the name and address of that person.

  Explain what authorises the inclusion in the prescribed form of the further details of the parade prescribed in section 2 of the form about uniforms, banners and flags and about any religious service or public meeting which is the purpose of the parade and the details of further destinations of the parade members prescribed in section 3.

  The view the Northern Ireland Office had taken was that the list of matters to be specified under Article 3(3) in a notice given by a person proposing to organise a public procession did not confine these matters which the Secretary of State could include when prescribing, under Article 3(2) the form in which the notice is to be given. Further consideration is now being given to this - and a further memorandum will be submitted as soon as possible.

  2. The Committee has asked for a memorandum explaining why section 3 of the prescribed form does not require corresponding information about travel by air. This was not included since the experience is that persons participating in public processions do not travel by air about Northern Ireland.

30th June 1997

Third Memorandum by the Northern Ireland Office

PUBLIC ORDER (PRESCRIBED FORM) REGULATIONS (NORTHERN IRELAND) 1997 (S.R. 1997/235)

  1. The Committee has asked for a memorandum on the following point:

  By the terms of the substituted provisions of Article 3 of the Public Order (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 a notice to the police about an intended public procession -

    (a)   must be given in a prescribed form, and

    (b)   must specify -

      (i)   the date and time when the procession is to be held;

      (ii)   its route;

      (iii)   the number of persons likely to take part in it;

      (iv)   the names of any bands which are to take part in it;

      (v)   the name and address of that person; . . .

     Explain what authorises the inclusion in the prescribed form of the further details of the parade prescribed in section 2 of the form about uniforms, banners and flags and about any religious service or public meeting which is the purpose of the parade and the details of further destinations of the parade members prescribed in section 3.

  The Northern Ireland Office explained in its memorandum dated 30 June 1997 that further consideration was being given to its view as to the authority for making this provision. As it explained, the Department considers that the list of matters to be specified under Article 3(3) does not confine the matters which the Secretary of State can include when presenting the form in which notice is to be given. The Secretary of State can, the Department consider, include any matter relevant to the exercise of the powers of the police under the Public Order (Northern Ireland) Order 1987.

  In the light of the Committee's request, however, the Department proposes to revise the enabling power in Article 3 of the 1987 Order (as amended by the Public Order (Amendment) (Northern Ireland) Order 1997) in the forthcoming Bill relating to public processions and to make fresh regulations thereunder as soon as possible.

3rd July 1997


 
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