Joint Committee On Human Rights Fifteenth Report


Formal minutes

Monday 14 July 2003

Members present:

Jean Corston MP, in the Chair


Lord BownessBaroness Whitaker
Lord Lester of Herne HillMr David Chidgey MP
Lord ParekhMr Kevin McNamara MP
Baroness PrasharMr Richard Shepherd MP


The Committee deliberated.

* * * * *

Draft Report [Scrutiny of Bills and Draft Bills: Further Progress Report], proposed by the Chairman, brought up and read.

Ordered, That the draft Report be read a second time, paragraph by paragraph.

Paragraphs 1.1 to 1.7 read and agreed to.

Paragraph 1.8 read as follows:

"Thirdly, clause 61 would insert a new section 62A in the 1994 Act. This would allow the senior police officer present to direct a trespasser who is on land with at least one other person and a vehicle or vehicles, to leave the land, removing any vehicle or other property of theirs, if (a) the trespassers have the common purpose of residing there for any period, (b) where the people have a caravan with them, it appears to the officer that the there is a council-run caravan site in the area to which the people could move, and (c) the occupier has asked the police to remove the trespassers from the land. It would be an offence to refuse to comply with a direction given by the officer. This engages the right to respect for private life and the home under ECHR Article 8.1, but the interference with that right is likely to be justified under Article 8.2 as protecting the rights of the landowner, and as being a proportionate response to the need to do so as long as there is another site available in the area."

Amendment proposed, in line 8, to leave out ", but the interference with that right is likely to be justified under Article 8.2 as protecting the rights of the landowner, and as being a proportionate response to the need to do so as long as there is another site available in the area", and insert "The right of the occupier of the land to peaceful enjoyment of his or her possessions, under Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 to the ECHR, is also engaged, together with the rights of adjacent occupiers to respect for their private lives and homes and enjoyment of possessions. Balancing these rights is difficult. Factors which might influence a decision as to whether these powers are being exercised compatibly would include whether the police officer has reasonable grounds for his or her belief that there is a council-provided site nearby to which the person could move."—(Mr Kevin McNamara.)

Question proposed, That the Amendment be made.

Amendment proposed to the proposed Amendment, to leave out the words "Factors which might influence a decision as to whether these powers are being exercised compatibly would include whether the police officer has reasonable grounds for his or her belief that there is a council-provided site nearby to which the person could move."—(Mr David Chidgey.)

Question put, That the Amendment to the proposed Amendment be made.

The Committee divided:

Content, 4

The Chairman

Lord Bowness

Mr David Chidgey

Mr Richard Shepherd

Not Content, 4

Baroness Prashar

Lord Lester of Herne Hill

Mr Kevin McNamara

Baroness Whitaker

There being an equality of votes, in accordance with Standing Order 57 of the House of Lords, which provides that the Question shall be resolved in the negative unless there is a majority in its favour, the Chairman declared the Amendment to the Amendment disagreed to.

Question put, That the Amendment be made.

The Committee divided:

Content, 4

Baroness Prashar

Lord Lester of Herne Hill

Mr Kevin McNamara

Baroness Whitaker

Not Content, 3

The Chairman

Lord Bowness

Mr David Chidgey

Paragraph 1.8, as amended, agreed to.

Paragraphs 1.9 to 6.1 read and agreed to.

Summary agreed to.

Resolved, That the Report be the Fifteenth Report of the Committee to each House.

Ordered, That certain papers be appended to the Report.

Ordered, That the Chairman do make the Report to the House of Commons and that Baroness Prashar do make the Report to the House of Lords.

* * * * *

[Adjourned till Monday 15 September 2003 at half past Four o'clock.


 
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Prepared 21 July 2003