Reform of the European Court of Human Rights

www.coe.int/reformECHR

OPEN CALL FOR CONTRIBUTIONS

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About the reform

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Plenary bodies

Steering Committee for Human Rights (CDDH)

Committee of Experts on the Reform of the Court (DH-GDR)
 

Drafting Groups on the Reform of the Court

GT-GDR-A

GT-GDR-B

GT-GDR-C

GT-GDR-D

GT-GDR-E
GT-GDR-F
GT-GDR-G

 

High level Conferences

Brighton, 18-20/04/2012

Declaration
Proceedings
Background documents

Izmir, 26-27/04/2011

Declaration
Proceedings
Background documents

Interlaken, 18-19/02/2010

Declaration
Proceedings
Preparatory contributions
Background documents

Name / Nom

Nationality /
Nationalité

Organisation

Summary / Résumé

Alikakos Petros

Greece

 

Capacity of the national judges to serve a term of office in the Court (ex. as member of the court or in the chambers of a Judge of the Court).
The Court should become a multi-door courthouse (possibility of ADR).
The Court should have a spokesman in each member state.
The Council of Europe should emphasise in the establishment of a European Judicial Training Institute on Human Rights.

Almeida Sara

Portugal

Ministry of Justice Portugal

(No summary provided / aucun résumé fourni)

Andreescu Maria-Nicoleta

Romania

Association for the Defense of Human Rights in Romania-the Helsinki Committee (APADOR-CH)

In order to improve the system of the European Convention on Human Rights and the European Court of Human Rights, we would like to propose the following:

    1. Translating judgements and decisions in the language of the state concerned
    2. Providing reasoned and individualised decisions for all applications which are struck out / rejected by the ECtHR
    3. Making wider use of general recommendations in the text of judgements, not only pilot judgements, and establishing clear time-limits for the States concerned to implement these measures
    4. Establishing clear time-limits for the ECtHR to issue a judgement/decision in a case.
    5. Increasing the number of judges and legal experts working for the ECtHR
    6. Expanding the definition of a victim to include indirect victims such as NGOs
    7. Introducing the possibility to lodge class-action lawsuits
    8. Excluding the possibility to adjourn cases in the pilot judgement procedure.

Anstead Alan

UK

UK Race and Europe Network (UKREN)

The European Convention on Human Rights and the European Court of Human Rights provides an important human rights standard that is applicable to the work of NGOs helping individuals fight discrimination on the grounds of race, ethnicity, religion and faith.

APEL School

Portugal

APEL School

Our contribution is more about the workings of the ECHR than the amendment to the Convention.

Arnbjörnsson Gylfi

Iceland

Icelandic Confederation of Labour (Alþýðusamband Íslands - ASÍ)

The Convention system is, in principle, working well and effectively. But in several respects it could be improved. In any event, the system must be defended against arguments which aim at or have the effect of weakening the role of the Court in ensuring, across Europe, effective protection of human rights, and, in particular, the social rights of human beings.

Ashworth Alice

UK

Stonewall

Stonewall firmly believes in the principle of the European Convention on Human Rights and its interpretation as a living instrument. We recognise the important role the European Court of Human Rights has played in securing gay people’s rights in Britain. Even though Britain’s domestic equalities legislation currently provides stronger legal protections for gay people than are contained in the Convention, the Court may be needed to hold future British governments to account on their treatment of gay people. We also see the Court as an important mechanism for holding governments to account in member states of the Council of Europe where gay people do not enjoy the same legal protections as we do in Britain.

Atkinson Chris

UK

The Discrimination Law Association (‘DLA’)

The European Convention on Human Rights, and the European Court of Human Rights that enforces it, has helped make rights real, in everyday life, for many of the people we work with. We think we should build on this achievement, working within the existing system to ensure that it protects more people’s rights in everyday life.

Begg David

Ireland

Irish Congress Trade Unions

The European Convention on Human Rights is vitally important to workers, their families and communities throughout the island of Ireland. The ECHR secures, first and foremost, the right to life, a fair trial, freedom of expression, thought, conscience and religion, but also respect for private and family life and the protection of property. It prohibits torture, degrading treatment, unlawful detention and discrimination. It embodies essential workplace rights, including the prohibition on forced labour, the right to unionise and to strike.
For workers and their unions any reduction in the rights provided or access to the European Court of Human Rights would be rejected as representing an unacceptable step backwards.
This Review must not be allowed to become an excuse to delay the accession of the EU to the ECHR, as provided for under the Lisbon Treaty. Likewise the Review cannot become an excuse to relax respect for human right or to provide any comfort to Governments for failure to secure the human rights recognised in the ECHR.
Rights of access and engagement with the Court by individuals, NGOs and trade unions should be maintained.
The Court’s willingness to defend an integrated view of human rights incorporating both social and economic and civil and political rights should be secured.

Blackburn Daniel

UK

International Centre for Trade Union Rights (‘ICTUR’)

During over 60 years the Convention has proven effective in the protection of human rights.
Tremendous progress has been made to reduce the backlog of cases following the introduction of the system of a single judge deciding on admissibility.
We caution against restricting admissibility on technical or procedural grounds.
The most effective steps are at national level by States to improve their own respect for the Convention and to improve levels of awareness of Convention rights.
It is necessary to increase the Court’s administrative, legal, and technical resources to boost: i) capacity to keep up with applications; ii) active engagement in pre-hearing steps to reach a resolution; and iii) better promotion of its decisions.
Rights of access and engagement with the Court by individuals, NGOs and trade unions should be maintained and expanded.
The Court’s willingness to defend an integrated view of human rights incorporating both social and economic and civil and political rights should be celebrated. Both categories of rights are necessary.

Bodnar Adam and Bychawska-Siniarska Dominika

Poland

Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights

The HFHR believes that the weakest point of the system is the implementation of Court judgments. A greater cooperation with civil society and the Department of Execution of Judgments should be predicted. Moreover, the Committee of Ministers should scrutinize the implementation of its recommendations by member states. The HFHR also see a greater need for technical and financial support of the Court and the Committee of Ministers Secretariat. The creation of a new institution of Special Rapporteur for the Implementation of Judgments could be envisaged.

Bowen Stephen

UK

British Institute of Human Rights

The ECHR is an enduring and positive legacy of countries across Europe to address the horrors of World War II.
The ECHR and the Court represent a gold standard of human rights protection across the globe. Both remain important and powerful symbols of our determination throughout Europe to uphold human rights as the cornerstone of healthy democracies.
The ECHR and the Court have led to positive changes in laws and practice across Europe, including in the UK.
The Court’s case-law helps ensure the ECHR is a powerful living instrument responding to changes in society since the ECHR was adopted in 1950. This is a very important and positive aspect of the ECHR human rights system.
Any future changes should strengthen the Court as an independent human rights court, not undermine or regress its role or powers.
A robust, independent human rights Court supervising compliance with the ECHR is crucial. We suggest several minimal indicators to assess whether changes undermine the Court’s independence, functions or powers.
The Court has already undergone several reforms in recent years, some of which are bearing fruit and others due to take force. These should be allowed to bed down and take effect before considering further change.

Boyashov Anatoly

Russian Federation

St. Petersburg State University, MA “Global Sociology”

Firstly, the observer status before the Court might be necessary for the implementation of the Convention at European level. The observer status specifically before the Court could enforce the implementation of the European principles. Secondly, the European Court of Human Rights is significantly effective in terms of his capacity to point out the structural problems in the legal national systems. Following this regard, the core part of judgments is not distributed by the mass media, but is demonstrative. Mass media represent the ECHR as a political instrument with the help of such cases. In this sense, the implementation of the margin of appreciation doctrine in the preamble of the Convention could smooth the view on the Court as a political instrument. Thirdly, since the Court sits in Strasbourg, sometimes it is worth analysing the national cultural and legal context of the case. For this reason, the Court applies the studies by NGOs and academic institutions. I strongly believe that the help from St. Petersburg State University academic institutions of the faculty of sociology could provide necessary equipment and resources for such studies, which would make the Court closer to the majority of people in the Russian Federation.

Breuer Marten

Germany

 

The Convention system should be amended at three stages: At the pre-application stage, the Convention should be granted precedence over conflicting national law. Every national judge should be obliged to leave national law not in accordance with the Convention unapplied. This would have the effect of making the Convention a supranational system, in analogy to EU law. At the post-judgment stage, each judgment finding a violation should allow the applicant to demand for a reopening of judicial proceedings at national level. The States Parties to the Convention should be obliged to introduce general reopening clauses, irrespective of whether a criminal law case or a civil law case is at stake. This would have the effect of enhancing the effective enjoyment of the rights and freedoms enshrined in the Convention, rather than awarding just satisfaction. At the compensation stage, the award of damages should be based on the rules of state liability rather than on the rules of equity. This would have the effect of making the award of damages more transparent.

Briggs Eleanor

UK

NAT

NAT is the UK's leading charity dedicated to transforming society's response to HIV. We champion the rights of people living with HIV. NAT welcomes the opportunity to submit views to this review of the European Court of Human Rights.
Although this presents an opportunity to further strengthen the role of the Court, NAT would highlight the reforms agreed in recent years (some yet to come into force) and suggest that these are allowed to take effect before substantial changes are made.
Any changes should build on the 60 years of protection offered by the Court. The Court is a symbol of European commitment to upholding rights, an example of best practice of human rights protection (for example in the UK leading to laws recognising gender reassignment for transsexual people), and any changes should develop rather than detract from this high standard.
The independence of the Court is vital. Any review should ensure judgments remain binding on States. Individuals should retain the right to make petitions to the Court if they feel their rights have been breached.
Steps could be taken to improve the Court’s efficiency, but any changes should strengthen the Court rather than reduce its power in any way.

Brindley Matthew

UK

The Traveller Movement

ECHR and the Court remain powerful tools for upholding Human Rights across Europe and have led to positive changes in laws and practices both domestically in the UK and at the pan-European level.
Any future changes should strengthen the Court as an independent human rights court and not undermine its powers in any way.
Implementation of the Convention at a national level is not an alternative to the role played by the Court at present.
Court judgments should remain binding on States that all Member States of the Council of Europe should continue to be obliged to accept the jurisdiction of the Court and individuals should continue to be able to make petitions to the Court to complain that their rights have been interfered with.
There should be no further weakening of the Court’s powers or working procedures.
Recognising that there might be more that could be done to improve the Court’s efficiency
Welcome further implementation of the Convention within the UK and would consider it a positive step in other Contracting States
Welcome improvements in the procedure for the implementation of court judgments.

Budzowska Jolanta

Poland

Budzowska Fiutowski and Partners. Legal Counsels

The comments involve the postulates of respective changes to the system of the European Convention of Human Rights and the ECHR in respect of the need to implement the rules of more informative justification of the reasons why the application was declared inadmissible; implementation of the electronic system that allows the applicants to monitor their cases; introducing new filtering mechanisms that facilitate the procedure before the Court; implementing the procedure of advisory opinions.

Bultrini Antonio

Italy

 

Guidance from the Court
The current legal basis could and should be improved with a view to explicitly granting the Court a basic (although discretionary) competence to indicate the type of measures (of an individual and/or of a general character) that might be taken, either by proposing options and leaving the choice of the measure to the State concerned, or by indicating specific measures in those cases where the nature of the violation found may be such as to leave no real choice as to the measures required to remedy it.
Appointment of a special rapporteur on execution
The main concerns that have been expressed in this regard do not seem to be convincing. As to the fundamental argument supporting such a proposal, it should be considered that the practice shows that in several cases the Committee of Ministers terminated the examination of a case even though there were serious doubts as to whether the measures that had been adopted by the State concerned were effective enough.
Infringement proceedings
There seem to be no compelling reason why they should be viewed as exceptional, as is currently the case. Nor should they be aimed solely at producing political pressure.

Chisleag Radu and Chilseag Losada Ioana-Roxanna

Romania

 

JUS–PHYSICS Models Applied in
improving ECHR and Court functioning
Due to similarities of nature and society, in structures (humans-molecules; body-society) and in relationships, Physics may offer its models for Law (Jus-physics).
The authors select Jus-physics versatile tools, useful to Experts’ Committee, based upon objective Mechanics Models: Dimensional Analysis; Newton’s Laws (I- no action -“status quo antem”; II – “proportionality with action”; III action and reaction – “rights and obligations”); Postulates of Conservation; Models of equilibrium of bodies; Basics of Processing of Experimental Data; Averages and Errors.
When applied to society, Physics models might have relaxed characteristics compared to nature: the definitions or the conditions for space, time, objects, resources and interactions are relatively less rigorous, more approximate, but even objective.
Jus-physics laws may be considered as being acceptable postulates, based upon partially pragmatic check, offering a higher level of common sense to be applied to Law phenomena, ECHR reform included.
Example: Name and scope of ECHR
Postulate of action and reaction implies to balance rights vs. obligations.
New name is necessary to show ECHR, Court have improved the position of rights vs. obligations.
Suggested new name:
European Convention on Human Rights and Obligations or politically better:
European Convention on Citizen.

Cochrane Alasdair and Lyons Dan

UK

Centre for Animals & Social Justice

We urge that long-term reform of the European Convention of Human Rights must involve tackling its prejudicial and discriminatory species exclusivity, to recognise the basic rights of animals from species other than Homo sapiens.
This is because the rationale for maintaining these basic rights as the exclusive preserve of the human species is irrational, unjust and undemocratic. Reasons why the species exclusivity of the Convention is wrong include:
An individual’s moral entitlement to protective rights is not dependent upon arbitrary biological traits such as species membership.
Existing convention rights such as freedom from torture should as a matter of justice apply to sentient nonhuman animals.
Recognition of the rights of other animals is necessary to overcome current disregard for animal welfare in European public policy which conflicts with public opinion and ethical expertise.
The incorporation of rights of nonhuman animals into the convention and court system would help rectify the current neglect of animal protection conventions.

Cojocariu Constantin and Iorgulescu Georgiana

Romania

Centre for Legal Resources

This submission is broadly concerned with ensuring that persons with disabilities have adequate access to the proceedings before the European Court of Human Rights. First, we highlight inconsistencies in the Court’s approach to ensuring applicants with disabilities benefit from appropriate legal representation. Second, we refer to the fact that the rules on standing and victim status as currently construed by the Court unduly restrict the access in certain circumstances of persons with disabilities to its proceedings. Finally, the submission includes brief proposals for rectifying the problems identified.

Coleman Paul

UK

Alliance Defending Freedom

In recent years the Court has issued a number of judgments on controversial moral and ethical issues. These decisions, based largely on creative interpretations of the Convention, override national sovereignty and undermine the Court’s legitimacy. The evolutive interpretation of the Convention gives the judges license to fabricate new rights and unless more judicial restraint is exercised, there is a danger that the Court will lose its legitimacy and its claim to being “the conscience of Europe.”
Combined with the Court’s evolutive interpretation of the Convention is its use of “European consensus” to reduce Member States’ margin of appreciation. There is no reason why a majority of countries legislating in one direction should force the remaining minority to conform to the trend, yet that is exactly what the “European consensus” approach does; resulting in a “tyranny of the majority” on morally controversial issues.

Collier Clare

UK

Equality and Human Rights Commission

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (‘the Commission’) welcomes the opportunity to respond to the Council of Europe's consultation on the longer-term future of the Convention and the Court. In the Commission's view, the Convention is and must remain the foundation of human rights protection in the Council of Europe. While the Commission does not in principle oppose the prospect of further reforms aimed at increasing the effectiveness of the Court, it cautions that continuing pressure for reform must not be allowed to erode the right of individual petition, which the Commission considers to an essential part of the Convention system. In particular, continuing problems with the Court's backlog of cases cannot justify the adoption of increasingly restrictive admissibility criteria. As was recognised in the Brighton Declaration, the most effective way to reduce the backlog of cases would be to ensure more effective implementation of the Convention at the domestic level across all member states, including the judgments of the Court themselves.

Costa de Almeida Ana

Portugal

Portuguese Bar Association (Ordem Dos Advogados Portugueses)

The Court must always have the power to accept an application timely presented but that, for obvious and justifiable reasons, does not fulfil all the formal requirements contained on the Rule 47 of the Rules of Court. The rules should not be so formal and strict that the Court will be aggravating itself the violation(s) of human rights by resigning of its fundamental role and purposes.
There is lack of mechanisms that will clearly compel (and allow) the High Contracting Parties to execute a judgment of the European Court by amending an internal judicial decision by which human rights were violated. In Portugal, there is a very limited way of achieving the execution of such judgments by reviewing a condemnation or a final judicial decision. Plus, even when allowed to by internal law, the State itself does not take any action in order to revise an internal decision or condemnation.
It is of major importance to implement legal mechanisms – at European and national level - that will ensure an effective execution of the judgments of the Court by each High Contracting Party, clearly restoring the position of the victim and putting an end to the violation(s) of human rights.

Dancheva Tamara

Bulgaria

Liberal International

The European Court of Human Rights should deal with the most serious human rights violations where national courts have clearly failed to apply the Convention obligations. Ensuring the jurisprudence of the Court across the Council of Europe member states can facilitate the work and guarantee that the same rights are provided by all member states. Therefore, the Committee of Ministers has to be the guarantor of the implementation of the jurisprudence and not a political body to analyse the decisions of the court. Lastly, the greatest protection against overuse of the Court is an improvement in the quality of justice administered in member states.

Day Mark

UK

Prison Reform Trust

The European Convention (ECHR) and Court (ECtHR) have played a vital role in helping to ensure that people in prison are treated according to basic principles of dignity and respect.
A robust, independent Court, monitoring respect for the human rights, is crucial. This means its judgments should remain binding on States, all Member States of the Council of Europe should continue to be obliged to accept the jurisdiction of the ECtHR and individuals should continue to be able to make petitions to the Court to complain that their rights have been interfered with.
The ECtHR’s case law makes the ECHR a powerful ‘living instrument’. This is an important and positive aspect of the European system of protecting human rights.
We are concerned by the actions of the UK authorities in seeking to undermine the authority of the Court while at the same time challenging or delaying the implementation of ECtHR judgments relating to the treatment and conditions of prisoners.
We hope the Council of Europe will use the opportunity of the consultation to examine the process for the supervision of the execution of judgments of the Court to ensure procedures for the monitoring and enforcement of judgments are sufficiently robust.

de Almeida Costa Mário Júlio Brito

Portugal

 

(No summary provided / aucun résumé fourni)

de Graaf Ruben and Konter Xavier

The Netherlands

Dutch Section of the International Commission of Jurists, the “Nederlands Juristen Comité voor de Mensenrechten” (NJCM)

According to the NJCM, the following options should (further) be explored:
With regard to the caseload and effective judicial protection: the possibilities of a ‘default judgment procedure’ to expedite the resolution of repetitive cases; the appointment of temporary additional judges to the Court; the possibilities for the Court to offer clear guidance in its judgments, with regard to what the Convention requires.
With regard to the execution of judgments and supervision on execution: technical assistance based on best practices, including a more binding character of such assistance; the possibility of bringing an infringement procedure under Art. 46(4) ECHR; awarding the mandate to bring such a procedure to another Council of Europe body, for instance the Parliamentary Assembly; the possibility to impose financial penalties within the context of such a procedure.
With regard to the implementation of the Convention at the national level: more focus on implementing and spreading best practices; the development of a template by the CDDH, which may serve as a basis for assessing the extent to which States Parties have embedded the Convention in their domestic legal orders.

de Londras Fiona

Ireland

 

The Court should prioritise constitutionalism over simple adjudication in decisions as to resource allocation and, to the extent possible, admissibility
The Grand Chamber should issue short decisions explaining why a case is or is not to be heard by it. These decisions should focus on the constitutionalist nature of the case
The Convention should be more effectively embedded in the political work of the COE, particularly inasmuch as an inter-state expectation of compliance with political consequences for non-compliance would be developed
Prioritisation of constitutionalism over adjudication would remove perverse incentives at domestic level to leave difficult rights-questions for determination in Strasbourg, thereby enhancing both embeddedness of the Convention at domestic level and the subsidiary nature of the Court

de Stefani Paolo

Italy

Human Rights Centre of the University of Padova

The note focuses on the link between the judicial activity of the European Court of Human Rights and the National human rights institutions (NHRI). It is argued that, as a concrete contribution to improve the effectiveness of the Court system and preserve its judicial character, all States should as a matter of urgency establish functional NHRI at national and/or local levels, if they have not done so yet, and support their independent mandate. As regards the Council of Europe institutions, it is suggested that the Court should emphasise, whenever possible, the NHRI’s role in the implementation of individual and general measures of execution of the judgments, especially when a pilot case is adjudicated; the Committee of Ministers, for its part, should systematically invite NHRIs to provide information about State compliance in relation to the execution of judgments. Such recommendations pursue a two-fold objective: to strengthen the supervision mandate given to the Court system as regards the State’s obligation to abide by the judgments, and to support NHRIs as qualified partner, in the non-judicial sphere, of the Court.

Dhaliwal Pavan

UK

British Humanist Association and supporting the submissions of the Equality and Diversity Forum (EDF), British Institute of Human Rights (BiHR), EHF and IHEU

The European Convention on Human Rights, and the European Court of Human Rights that enforces it, emerged from the horrors of the Second World War. These protections are an important part of our shared heritage – past generations fought and died to secure the rights and freedoms we are all lucky enough to enjoy today. In 2013, the Convention and Court continue to protect all of us, across Europe, and has helped make rights real, in everyday life, for many of the people we work with. We think we should build on this achievement, working within the existing system to ensure that it protects more people’s rights in everyday life.

Donovan Lise

Sweden

Swedish Confederation for Professionals Employees

Europe’s human rights system depends very much on the effective implementation of the Convention’s standards by the Contracting Parties. Therefore, it is the duty of the Governments to effectively prevent human rights violations and quickly and effectively execute and implement all the Court’s judgments. That will lead to fewer well-founded applications to the Court. The Council of Europe plays a crucial role assisting and encouraging national implementation of the Convention and the Court’s judgements.
We are against restricting the role of the Court to a ‘Constitutional Court’. The right of individual application to the Court is a cornerstone of the system for effective protection of human rights.
The Court should give precedence to the rights of humans (such as social rights) over those of corporations. Collective rights should be included in ‘human rights’. The Court has recognised the right to collective bargaining and to strike. This development should continue and be reinforced. The Courts interpretation should more consistently refer to international (labour) standards.
The Court´s need for more resources and additional judges should be seriously considered. The Court must also be able to dispose of inadmissible applications as efficiently as possible with the least impact on its resources.

1) Dzehtsiarou Kanstantsin - 2) Greene Alan

1) Belarus - 2) Ireland

 

Restructure the European Court of Human Rights so that Chambers here only ‘adjudicatory complaints’ whereas the Grand Chamber hears cases that raise ‘constitutionalist issues’.
Enhance erga omnes effect of Grand Chamber judgments.

1) Edwards Richard - 2) Quénivet Noëlle

1) UK - 2) France

 

We are concerned with three aspects of the Convention system, namely compulsory membership of the European Convention on Human Rights, time limits and the future role of the Commissioner. With respect to the Commissioner, we argue for an enhanced role in three key areas: compliance, education / outreach, and better enforcement of court judgments.

European Network of National Human Rights Institutions

European organisation

European Network of National Human Rights Institutions

This submission on behalf of ENNHRI focuses on some key themes in the context of reform of the Convention system. ENNHRI recalls that the Brighton Declaration affirmed the importance of the establishment of national human rights institutions (NHRIs) in each Member State to ensure effective implementation of the Convention at a national level, and therefore NHRIs are clearly core stakeholders in the Convention system. The Brighton Declaration also placed considerable emphasis on effective implementation of the Convention and proper execution of judgments, another theme addressed in this submission.
ENNHRI identifies the main challenge to the Convention system into the future as the ability of the Council of Europe to ensure compliance with the Convention by its Member States. In this light a number of practical recommendations are made which focus on facilitating national implementation first, emphasising that this is the primary responsibility of each Member State under the Convention, and then moves to address problems regarding execution of judgments thereafter. In relation to execution of judgments the most important recommendation is that a more concrete response from the Council of Ministers to non-execution of judgments, including the possibility of imposing sanctions on recalcitrant states. Throughout this Submission ENNHRI illustrates how NHRIs play a critical role in the Convention system, and makes a series of recommendation aimed at encouraging states to have more structured engagements with NHRIs, at both national and European level as one measure in meeting the challenges facing the Convention system at the present time.

The European Roma Rights Centre

Hungary

European Roma Rights Centre

The Court should make greater and more innovative use of its powers to ensure that States fulfil their obligations under Article 46 following the finding of a violation.
The Court should play a more active role in encouraging parties to reach friendly settlements.
Appropriate resources should be made available to the Court to ensure that its priority policy – and not the State against which a complaint is made – is the single most important factor in determining how long it will take the Court to hear a case.
The Court should publish guidance on the exercise of its discretion, for example, under Rule 47, to ensure that such discretion is exercised consistently across the Court and that applicants and civil society have confidence that it is being exercised consistently.
The Court should regularly carry out consultations on proposed Rule and other changes and undergo an independent, external audit of its Rules and practices to ensure that its procedures do not prevent particularly vulnerable applicants from complaining to the Court.
Applicants and their representatives should be able to submit applications and communicate with the Court by electronic means, as Governments currently do.

Fertsman Carla

UK / Canada

Redress Trust (REDRESS)

The Convention is at the heart of the European project, and a strong European Court of Human Rights has been central to its success. A broad and consistently-applied right of individual application to the Court is crucial to vindicate individuals’ rights, assist member States in implementation of the Convention, and uphold the rule of law.
Assertions that the Court’s role is unsustainable without radical change are not supported by the evidence. The Court has shown that it can streamline its processes to manage its caseload. For the long-term viability of the system, the Court’s efforts must be matched by effective implementation by States of pilot judgments; this should be a priority area for the resources and expertise of the Council of Europe.
The Court may better assist States to implement their obligations under the Convention through the further development of a more detailed approach to ordering remedies. Where appropriate, such orders should aim to address root causes of violations. This will also aid execution of judgments.
To ensure effective access to the Court, Rule 39 should be used by the Court where credible concerns about threats or reprisals are raised.

Fiddy Alison

UK

Mind, the leading Mental Health charity in England

The system of the European Convention on Human Rights and the European Court has led to some positive changes in law and practice not only for our beneficiaries in the UK but also for people with mental health problems across Europe. It is vital that the Court continues to be a strong and independent institution with Member States bound by its judgments. Only if this happens can we ensure that it can monitor and protect the human rights of our beneficiaries across Europe. It is essential that individuals continue to have the right to apply directly to the Court. We know that there have been very lengthy delays for individuals but we are aware that a number of steps have been taken to address efficiency which have yet to take effect. It is particularly important that if any future changes are proposed there should be no dilution of the Court’s powers. Its case law ensures that the Convention is interpreted to reflect the changing concerns and values of society.

Fire Brigades Union

UK

Fire Brigades Union

Fire Brigades Union (FBU) response to the Council of Europe’s consultation on the future of the Human Rights System. Main points are

    · Recognise recent progress
    · Emphasise responsibilities of States to respect human rights
    · Improvements in Court administration
    · Improve and maintain access to the Court

Fokas Effie

Greece

 

There is inherently a fundamental tension between the subsidiarity principle and the Council of Europe’s commitment to the flourishing of pluralism (including religious pluralism), and that tension is very present in the Court’s case law, where the Court has struggled – sometimes successfully, other times less so – to strike the right balance between these two principles. This struggle is an inevitable feature of the Court’s task to interpret the ‘living instrument’ of the European Convention on Human Rights. From the perspective of a Greek citizen and researcher on religious freedom in Orthodox states, this ‘living instrument’ has evolved in critical ways to protect religious pluralism. From its first cases in 1959 until 1993, the Court found no violations of religious freedoms in the cases before it. The watershed case came from Greece, in Kokkinakis vs. Greece, 1993. In the just over 20 years since, over 50 cases have been decided with a conviction against a state for violation of Article 9. Seven majority Orthodox states are responsible for 63% of these cases, and Greece alone for over 20%. The variable Margin of Appreciation is debatable in these cases, but there is little room for debate over whether the Court’s religious freedoms decisions overall have improved matters for members of religious minority groups and, thus, in the direction of religious pluralism.

Garcia Marques Ana

Portugal

 

Regarding the interaction between the Court and national authorities a mechanism could be created by which national courts would request technical assistance by the ECHR when deciding about cases at domestic level that raise particularly difficult human rights issues; online applications to the Court should be implemented; judgements on repetitive cases should be adequately reasoned.

Gerards J.H.

The Netherlands

 

The Court presently deals with different actors, with different issues, and within a different institutional context than could have been anticipated when it was established in the late 1940s. The essential question to be asked is how the supervisory system should be adapted to respond to these changes, focusing on solutions that have not yet been explored.
Taking this perspective, it is argued that much would be gained if (1) the Court would adopt a stricter approach towards the definition and interpretation of Convention rights and if the text of the Convention would be modernised to reflect today’s fundamental rights acquis. From the perspective of solving caseload problems as well as enhancing legitimacy, it would be valuable if (2) the Court would shift the focus of its attention to procedural review rather than substantive proportionality review. Moreover, it is suggested (3) to look for an adequate solution for the Court to deal with the increasing number of complaints about human rights violations in horizontal relations, since the current case-law gives rise to much criticism and procedural unfairness. Finally, it is proposed (4) that the Court and the Committee of Ministers should be vested with more powers to enforce their judgments, in particular by means of imposing fines and award punitive damages in cases of aggravated violations of Convention rights.

Giménez Sara

Spain

Fundación Secretariado Gitano (FSG)

(No summary provided / aucun résumé fourni)

Goldston James

USA

Open Society Justice Initiative

A combination of existing measures, including but not limited to Protocol 14 to the European Convention of Human Rights, as well as new proposals, have the potential, if fully implemented, to improve the execution of judgments. Notably, many of these recommendations would not require the expenditure of additional resources (though budget constraints continue to impose a significant limitation on the system’s effectiveness); rather, they require a more effective, coherent deployment of current Council of Europe (Council of Europe) resources, building on existing resources in a more complementary and cooperative manner.
Three key areas are discussed:
Effective Monitoring by various bodies–including but not limited to the Committee of Ministers–to increase the capacity to effectively supervise the execution of judgments;
Greater Coordination amongst Council of Europe mechanisms, and between European and national bodies;
Expanded Civil Society Participation in providing information on execution and an independent perspective on member States’ compliance with their implementation obligations.

Gonera Katarzyna

Poland

National Council of the Judiciary of Poland

(No summary provided / aucun résumé fourni)

Gormally Brian

UK

Committee on the Administration of Justice (Northern Ireland)

Convention central to peace in Northern Ireland
The lesson of past decades is that it is only when states abide by the rule of law and respect people’s rights that a safe and secure society can flourish. The centrality of human rights was one of the key reasons the Belfast /Good Friday Agreement was possible, and why it has been successful in maintaining peace notwithstanding periodic uncertainty over the political institutions. The Agreement provided that: “The British Government will complete incorporation into Northern Ireland law of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), with direct access to the courts, and remedies for breach of the Convention, including power for the courts to overrule Assembly legislation on grounds of inconsistency.” Any move to withdraw from the Convention or its incorporation in the Human Rights Act would be a breach of the Belfast Good Friday Agreement and deal a serious and gratuitous blow to the Northern Ireland peace process.

Graça Carvalho Maria de Fátima

Portugal

 

Le droit de recours individuel, ayant peu de contraintes formelles, est le modèle idéal mais n’aura de sens que si le traitement équitable de toutes les requêtes sera possible (notamment par décision d’un juge, raisonnée et bien compris par les requérants). Les procédures automatisées, minimisant la position des requérants, peuvent devenir nocives et affecter le prestige de la Cour. Dans ces circonstances, serait alors préférable un modèle d’intervention sélective, fondé sur des critères préétablis dont le premier critère de sélection devrait reposer sur la gravité de la violation invoquée.
Les statistiques actuelles, dont plus de 90% des requêtes sont rejetées in limine et, à l’inverse, celles qui sont admises sont presque toujours à l’origine d’une déclaration de violation, sont difficiles à comprendre car il n’existe pas, comme ce serait normal, un «moyen terme» et révèlent aussi que les observations formulées par les États n´ont pas, généralement, un poids important pour la solution.
Le traitement des requêtes répétitives doit toujours assurer le respect des principes fondamentaux d’une procédure équitable et les décisions doivent être motivées. L’octroi immédiat et généralisé des indemnisations aux requérants n’est pas la meilleur solution et provoquera une augmentation du nombre de requêtes devant la Cour.
Les modalités de supervision des arrêts doivent être plus sélectives et simplifiées; sauf pour les cas plus graves (qui doivent faire l’objet de supervision intense) et les requêtes répétitives (qui doivent suivre un modèle de supervision spécifique), dans les autres cas la supervision doit reposer sur le principe de la confiance aux États, ayant des interventions aléatoires et toujours en cas de réclamation des requérants.
L’évolution de la pratique de la Cour concernant l’octroi généralisé des indemnisations, souvent trop élevées (surtout en cas de violation du droit de propriété), accentuent son intervention en questions de nature patrimoniale sans que des règles préalables et connues soient établies sur la preuve et l´évaluation des dommages et sur les critères de calcul des montants. Gardant cette voie - ce que nous soulève les plus grandes réserves – il est important que ces règles soient définies précédemment, qu’elles soient connues de tous et, compte tenu des importantes conséquences pour les parties, qui le renvoi à la Grande Chambre soit admissible en la matière.

Greer Steven

UK

 

In spite of the implementation of Protocol No 14 to the European Convention on Human Rights on 1 June 2010, the European Court of Human Rights continues to face a case overload crisis with no definitive solution in sight. In this submission the role ‘constitutionalisation’ might play in providing a more secure future is reconsidered. Having distinguished the three dominant analytical frameworks – ‘individual justice’, ‘constitutional justice’ and ‘pluralism’ – in the ‘official’ and ‘academic/judicial’ streams of the debate, it is concluded that a fourth, ‘constitutional pluralism’, now offers a particularly attractive alternative.

Gregson Joanna

UK

South West Law (Legal Services in the Community) Ltd

South West Law is a legal aid firm specializing in Immigration and Asylum, Housing, Welfare Benefits, Community Care and Planning work for Romani Gypsies and Irish Travellers.
The ECHR is a cornerstone of our work and a vital protection for these groups. We think it is essential that it is maintained and strengthened for the reasons given in this paper.

Haguenau-Moizard Catherine

France

 

La Cour devrait disposer de davantage de moyens pour faire face à la masse de requêtes : budget autonome et accru, collaborateurs pour les juges, à l’instar de ce qui existe dans les autres juridictions internationales.

Heuschmid Johannes

Germany

Hugo Sinzheimer Institut for Labour Law (HSI)

(No summary provided / aucun résumé fourni)

Hughes Christl

UK

GIRES - the Gender Identity Research & Education Society

Continuing to improve the status of transgender individuals in the UK.

Human Rights Centre, Finland, NHRI

Finland

Human Rights Centre, Finland (as the National Human Rights Institution)

Focus of Court’s work on significant, complex and novel cases, however, no unnecessary limitations to the right of individual application. Sanctions to States that constantly disregard the judgments. Better national implementation on all levels of the society. Sufficient funding for translation and distribution of judgments domestically. Better utilisation of precedents in case law. Enhanced knowledge on national level of Convention, its case law and the procedures relating to Court.

Hunt Murray

UK

Visiting Professor in Human Rights Law at the University of Oxford

The main challenge threatening the long term future of the Court and the Convention system is their perceived lack of democratic legitimacy. The Court and the Convention system should proactively and constructively engage with the democratic critique, by paying more attention to elected parliaments. Three proposals are suggested: (1) the Court should take the opportunity presented by Protocol 15 to signal a new attention to parliamentary consideration of the Convention compatibility of laws, to incentivise better national implementation; (2) the Court’s judges should regularly appear before their national parliaments to establish a dialogue with legislators; and (3) a proactive special rapporteur should be appointed with a mandate to bring about a step-change in the role of national parliaments in the Convention system.

Janlöv Åsa

Sweden

Swedish Trade Union Confederation, LO.

Europe’s human rights system depends very much on the effective implementation of the Convention’s standards by the Contracting Parties. Therefore, it is the duty of the Governments to effectively prevent human rights violations and quickly and effectively execute and implement all the Court’s judgments. That will lead to fewer well-founded applications to the Court. The Council of Europe plays a crucial role assisting and encouraging national implementation of the Convention and the Court’s judgements.
We are against restricting the role of the Court to a ‘Constitutional Court’. The right of individual application to the Court is a cornerstone of the system for effective protection of human rights.
The Court should give precedence to the rights of humans (such as social rights) over those of corporations. Collective rights should be included in ‘human rights’. The Court has recognised the right to collective bargaining and to strike. This development should continue and be reinforced. The Courts interpretation should more consistently refer to international (labour) standards.
The Court´s need for more resources and additional judges should be seriously considered. The Court must also be able to dispose of inadmissible applications as efficiently as possible with the least impact on its resources.

Johansson Märta

Sweden

University of Örebro

Comments on several of the measures taken since Protocol 14 to deal with the backlog of cases, especially on the increase of procedural bars on admissibility, the CM's role in supervising the execution of judgments, and the new hierarchy of cases. Also comments on the right to application.

Johnson Chris

UK

Community Law Partnership (CLP) solicitors

CLP specialises in housing and public law and represents homeless people, tenants facing eviction, Gypsies and Travellers seeking sites or facing eviction, and other vulnerable groups. The ECHR is a cornerstone of our work and a vital protection for these groups. We think it is essential that it is maintained and strengthened for the reasons given in this paper.

Killerby Margaret

UK

 

Are Court judgments still “fit for purpose”? Possible advantages of shorter judgments in order to promote human rights.

Klein Eckart

Germany

 

This contribution focuses on the interpretation of the material guarantees of the European Convention by the European Court of Human Rights. The jurisprudence of the Court is examined, and it is shown how the Court is finding its path between the wording of the treaty provisions formulated by (or acceded to later) the States parties and the perception of the Convention as a "living instrument". The problem of "strong" and "weak" changes is discussed as well as the role of the margin of appreciation doctrine. Particularly the jurisprudence of the Court as to the legal recognition of transsexuality is analysed as well as the Court's methodology to find out whether a new "consensus" or "common ground" has emerged. It is examined how far documents created outside of the Council of Europe can be used to identify an emerging consensus. The contribution warns against an interpretation that is too much morally overloaded and pleads for steady but cautious evolutionary steps.

Kuriks Sander

Estonia

 

My contribution contains the following suggestions on the development of human rights protection system in Europe: suggestions on replenishments to the European Convention on Human Rights (hereinafter “the Convention”); progressive methods to reduce the number of human rights violations in the member states and applications to the Court; suggestions on the changes in the structure of the Court in order to make the decision-making process more impartial and transparent; suggestions on different conception of approach towards the member states regarding the human rights violations in order to minimize those and the number of applications.

Lambert Abdelgawad Elisabeth

France

 

Compétence de la Cour pour améliorer sa politique visant à indiquer aux Etats les mesures à prendre au titre des articles 41 et 46, notamment par une meilleure coordination de la satisfaction équitable avec les autres mesures ; juguler le traitement des requêtes individuelles sans remettre en cause le droit de recours individuel ; veiller à mettre en place des mesures plus fermes en matière d’exécution des arrêts.

Larsson Helena

Sweden

Saco, the Swedish Confederation of Professional Associations

Europe’s human rights system depends very much on the effective implementation of the Convention’s standards by the Contracting Parties. Therefore, it is the duty of the Governments to effectively prevent human rights violations and quickly and effectively execute and implement all the Court’s judgments. That will lead to fewer well-founded applications to the Court. The Council of Europe plays a crucial role assisting and encouraging national implementation of the Convention and the Court’s judgements.
We are against restricting the role of the Court to a ‘Constitutional Court’. The right of individual application to the Court is a cornerstone of the system for effective protection of human rights.
The Court should give precedence to the rights of humans (such as social rights) over those of corporations. Collective rights should be included in ‘human rights’. The Court has recognised the right to collective bargaining and to strike. This development should continue and be reinforced. The Courts interpretation should more consistently refer to international (labour) standards.
The Court´s need for more resources and additional judges should be seriously considered. The Court must also be able to dispose of inadmissible applications as efficiently as possible with the least impact on its resources.

Leach Philip

UK

Director of the European Human Rights Advocacy Centre (EHRAC), based at Middlesex University, London

The main points of this submission are:
The need for an evidence-based approach to considering and seeking to solve the problems faced by the Court. Reforms must not be undertaken without a sufficiently clear evidentiary basis as to the nature and cause of the problem and the likely effect of the proposed solution.
Heavy emphasis should be laid on the need for the 47 Convention states to do much more at the national level to ensure compliance with the ECHR. A comprehensive programme of measures should be undertaken by Council of Europe states to improve national implementation, including the proper execution of the Court’s judgments.
The right to individual petition is a cornerstone of the Convention system: any changes to the Court’s procedures must allow for the significant disadvantages faced by some potential applicants.

Leven Shauna

UK

René Cassin

Overall, the system of the European Convention on Human Rights and the European Court of Human Rights does not possess any debilitating flaws and is a system celebrating 60 years successfully protecting European human rights. However, the system is currently facing challenges such as increased criticism by States which, among other things, has resulted in reforms to the functions of the Court. Some of these reforms have the potential to threaten the protection of individuals’ rights by undermining the Court’s role as the primary overseeing body of the ECHR. Instead of introducing more reforms which may further undermine the Court, the Council of Europe must consider increasing the positive publicity the system receives and must redress prevailing concerns that the system is attacking member States’ sovereignty. Increased transparency, public education, and dialogue with not only State governments, but also citizens and civil society organisations, is needed to promote the Court’s role as an avenue for effective protection of individual human rights.

Lubiszewski Maciej

Poland

academic – University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Poland (Faculty of Law and Administration)

Pilot judgment procedure should be preceded by consultation with the national authorities a/ of different constitutional branches and b/ at initial stage (approval to apply the PJP) and later (question of national measure)
Limitation of possibility of affording just satisfaction in the form of pecuniary compensation
Imposing a fee on applicants as a deterrent to discourage clearly inadmissible applications
Introducing the requirement of preparing the application by professional lawyer

Malinverni Giorgio

Suisse

 

(No summary provided / aucun résumé fourni)

Mamou Max

France/Suisse/Grèce

Fondation Mémoire Albert Cohen (Genève)

Nécessité d’assurer la conservation du droit de recours individuel qui a été fragilisé par les dernières conférences interétatiques, alors même qu’il constitue le « clef de voûte de la protection ».
Nécessité de limiter la notion prétorienne de « marge nationale d’appréciation »
Toute amplification de la marge nationale d’appréciation, et toute restriction supplémentaire au droit de recours individuel entraîneront moins de contrôle par le juge européen et national et le risque de violation sera plus important.
Nécessité d’accentuer la pression sur les Etats les moins respectueux de la Convention en les invitant à prendre les mesures nécessaires pour appliquer la Convention, afin de réduire le nombre de requêtes et de désengorger la Cour.
Promouvoir une meilleure exécution des arrêts par la mise en œuvre de nouvelles « contraintes » : envisager de menacer l’Etat d’une procédure en manquement et/ou le condamner au paiement de pénalités destinées au Fonds fiduciaire pour les droits de l’homme.
Donner au requérant le pouvoir de saisir la Cour d’une demande d’interprétation ou de constat de manquement.
Nécessité de favoriser le dialogue des juges via le Conseil de l’Europe.

Marrecas Ferreira Paulo

Portugal / France

 

My points all concern the complaints procedure before the ECHR, in particular on the possibility to request an urgent measure through a simple letter (I understand that this possibility already exists under R. 47, however it should be generally admitted for interim measures), to give a better motivation for an inadmissibility decision, to end the practice of unilateral declarations under art. 62-A 1a) of the Court Rules (it is not understood by complainants); to maintain, as it is, the complaints procedure free; and to broadly allow an appreciation of a legal help demand by the Court without referring to the national declaration, for legal help is not always conceded at internal level for a complaint against the State.

Melanya Arustamyan

Armenia

The Chamber of Advocates of the Republic of Armenia

To increase the number of secretariat workers in order to carry out fast discussions of a large number of cases. To pay those workers at the expense of the countries with whom a large number of complaints are lodged (proportionally).
To exclude examination of complaints lodged with the Republic of Armenia by staff of secretariat that are citizens of the Republic of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia in order to secure the prima facie impartiality of complaint examination defining an order that is also defined by United Nations Commission on Human Rights.

Menssen Tjark

Germany

DGB Rechtsschutz GmbH

(No summary provided / aucun résumé fourni)

Migliazza Maria

Italie

Libera Università di Lingue e Comunicazione IULM – Milano (Italia)

Les rapports entre la Cour CEDH et la Cour de justice de l’Union européenne pour la protection des droits fondamentaux est souhaitable soient considérés après la vigueur du Traité de Lisbonne et l’adhésion prévue de l’Union à la CEDH.

Mole Nuala

UK

The AIRE Centre

The Convention, the Court and the right of individual petition must be retained, Greater efforts need to be devoted to the execution of judgments and the reduction of repetitive cases. The doctrine of the margin of appreciation must be correctly applied and political attacks on the Convention and the court must stop.

Morin Chartier Elisabeth

France

Union Européenne Féminine (European Union of Women)

Désengorger le rôle de la Cour Européenne des Droits de l'Homme dans la mesure où statuant a priori, elle n'aura plus à statuer a posteriori. Harmoniser l'application de la Convention Européenne des Droits de l'Homme par toutes les juridictions nationales.

Moudrakis Christos

Greece

 

The main points of my contribution deal with the enrichment of the admissibility criteria of the European Convention of Human Rights (Article 35) and with methods which may be implemented in order to become broadly known through the compulsory education the Protection System of Human Rights of the Convention.
More specifically, my proposal for reducing the workload of the European Court of Human Rights is focused on two points: 1) the formation of a National Authority by the Contracting States which will help the Court in some issues, and 2) the expansion of the implementation of the friendly settlement procedure (Article 39 of the Convention).

Offer Alex and Markus Joseph

UK

Garden Court North

The right of individual access to the Court is essential in order to ensure
that individual rights are adequately protected; and
that the Convention is consistently applied across the Contracting States.
Implementation of the Convention at a national level is not an alternative to the protection and interpretation of individual rights by the European Court.
We would welcome measures that resulted in earlier implementation of Court decisions and invite consideration of Court set timetables and fines for non-compliance.
We are not in favour of alternative dispute resolution as it risks allowing Contracting States to “buy off” claims;
We are opposed to non-binding advisory opinions if these deprive the individual of their right to individual petition;
Future challenges for the Court include:
taking greater account of wider international law: the Court should take more account of wider trends in international law in all areas of its work;
addressing the unresolved problem of the failure of Contracting States to give practical effect to the principles set out by the Court;
the serious lack of funding for cases before the Court.;
delay – we invite consideration of tighter timetables.

Ogilvie Sara

UK

Liberty

The Court has taken effective steps to improve the efficiency of the system. The Council of Europe should focus its efforts on encouraging genuine national implementation of human rights obligations.

Patrick Angela

UK

JUSTICE

The future of the Convention system must build upon the Brighton Declaration commitment to the right to individual petition and to supervisory function of the European Court of Human Rights. The goal of any further reform should be to enhance the protection of individual rights in Europe. This process must be evidence-based and should focus on achieving a truly shared responsibility for implementation of Convention rights. No further reform of the processes of the Court should take place until the impact of the latest round of changes can be fully assessed. The first priority should be commitment to more effective national implementation measures and better mechanisms for the implementation of judgments.
Recent vocal criticism from some commentators within the UK should not dominate debate on the future of the Convention system. Nor should it detract from the contribution which the ECHR makes to the protection of individual rights within the UK.

Peraza Parga Luis

Spain

 

Two proposals.
In view of the brand new Protocol number 16 of the European Convention on Human Rights, not yet operated providing the ability for constitutional and supreme courts (domestic tribunals) of the Council of Europe member states to request advisory opinions from the European court to interpret and apply the rights and freedoms defined in the Convention and its Protocols, we propose once proved efficient, extend to all domestic courts the faculty to ask the European judge.
Our second proposal is open up the possibility to give Advisory Opinions in a more liberal way from the Court following the successful American model. The American Convention on Human Rights allows all organs and member states of OAS – whether or not they are parties to the Pact – to turn to the Inter-American Court of Human Rights for an advisory opinion. Advisory opinions may concern the American Convention or other human rights treaties between American states, and the compatibility of the domestic laws with such international instruments. So far, the Court has issued twenty advisory opinions. Advisory Opinions represent one of the most flexible mechanisms to create soft law.

Pettiti Christophe et Puechavy Michel

France

Institut des Droits de l’Homme du Barreau de Paris (IDHBP)

Nécessité d’assurer la conservation du droit de recours individuel qui a été fragilisé par les dernières conférences interétatiques, alors même qu’il constitue le « clef de voûte de la protection ».
Nécessité de limiter la notion prétorienne de « marge nationale d’appréciation »
Toute amplification de la marge nationale d’appréciation, et toute restriction supplémentaire au droit de recours individuel entraîneront moins de contrôle par le juge européen et national et le risque de violation sera plus important.
Nécessité d’accentuer la pression sur les Etats les moins respectueux de la Convention en les invitant à prendre les mesures nécessaires pour appliquer la Convention, afin de réduire le nombre de requêtes et de désengorger la Cour.
Promouvoir une meilleure exécution des arrêts par la mise en œuvre de nouvelles « contraintes » : envisager de menacer l’Etat d’une procédure en manquement et/ou le condamner au paiement de pénalités destinées au Fonds fiduciaire pour les droits de l’homme.
Donner au requérant le pouvoir de saisir la Cour d’une demande d’interprétation ou de constat de manquement.
Nécessité de favoriser le dialogue des juges via le Conseil de l’Europe.

Pietrzak Mikolaj

Poland

Human Rights Commission of the Polish Bar Council in Poland

Contribution presented by the Human Rights Commission at the National Bar Council in Poland was prepared by Polish advocates, experienced in representation of applicants in proceedings before the Court.
Presented comments refer to the following issues:
Shortening the procedure before the Court; accelerating the examination of cases of a strategic character (pilot judgement procedure).
Concerns regarding shortening the time limit under Article 35(1) of the Convention to four months – Protocol No. 15 amending the Convention – effectiveness of the system of providing legal assistance to applicants.
The principles of subsidiarity and the margin of appreciation under Protocol No. 15 to the Convention.
The new procedure of advisory opinions under Protocol No. 16 to the Convention – a need to protect the right to a trial within a reasonable time.
The pressing need for the amendment of Rule 52A of the Rules of the Court – the applicant’s right to be informed of the grounds of the decision on inadmissibility of the application.
The execution of judgments and implementation of Convention at domestic level.
Judicial composition of the Court – open and public hearings of candidates for the position of the judge.
Alternative Dispute Resolution - violations of repetitive nature.

Pillay Róisín

Ireland

International Commission of Jurists and Amnesty International

The guiding principles in any new reforms of the Convention system must be that they serve to enhance the protection of human rights, and in particular to ensure better implementation of the Convention at national level; that they enhance access of individuals to justice for violations of the full range of Convention rights; that that they ensure more effective reparation for violation of the rights guaranteed under the Convention. The success of the Convention system in the long-term requires:
respect by all Member States for the Convention institutions, and acknowledgment of the shared responsibility for the protection of Convention rights;
enhanced national implementation of the Convention, including by states bringing their law and policy into line with judgments of the Court regarding other Member States;
adequate powers and jurisdiction of the Court to ensure consistency in standards, and to ensure effective protection to individuals, preserving the system of individual petition in its current form;
measures to address systemic human rights problems leading to numerous similar applications to the Court;
further reforms to execution of judgments and supervision of execution procedures, in particular for systemic violations, making Article 46(4) operational and giving further consideration to financial penalties

Pinto Diogo

 

European Movement International (EMI)

The EMI recognises the need for reforms to deal with the huge backlog of cases but resolutely favours maintaining the Court’s dual function of adjudicating in individual cases and authoritatively interpreting the Convention to ensure common European Human Rights standards.
EMI believes far greater pressure should be exerted on States (ultimately with financial penalties) if they do not take effective measures to prevent violations, if they fail to tackle longstanding systemic deficiencies or if they unnecessarily delay fully executing judgements of the Court.
States which burden the Court with a disproportionate amount of work should be obliged to make a correspondingly higher contribution to the Court’s operational budget.
Measures should be taken, including if need be the recruitment of additional judges to speed up the work of the Court and ensure that all admissible cases are dealt with in a reasonable time frame.
With the advent of Protocol 16 empowering the Court to deliver advisory opinions it is to be hoped that at some stage in the future draft legislation with human rights implications could be routinely vetted by the Court to avoid a flood of new cases stemming from provisions which are manifestly incompatible with the ECHR.

Pollock David

UK

International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU - member of INGO conference) and of the European Humanist Federation (EHF)

The Court has a vital role in safeguarding human rights in Europe. It needs to be robust in resisting criticism from Member States that is motivated by domestic politics at a time of austerity and populism. This requires deliberate attention to presentation and public relations so as to correct misinterpretations and misrepresentations as a matter of routine. The margin of appreciation must not become a device whereby the Court can avoid difficult issues, and it might be worth developing a doctrine of temporary mitigation of breaches of the Convention based on the distance a State might have to travel and the difficulty it might have in moving from a traditional practice to a Convention-compliant one, provided that progress towards compliance was supervised by the Court. There should be greater transparency in the selection of third parties allowed to intervene in cases: we suggest a procedure. The Court needs to be better funded and more efficient but not at the expense of its prime role, and we are concerned at the reduction in the time available to initiate an application.

Poynor Bryony, Willers Marc and Ó Ceallaigh Greg

UK

Garden Court Chambers, London

We support and endorse the submissions made by Garden Court North Chambers and Community Law Partnership Solicitors and place particular emphasis on the work of our Chambers with the Roma, Gypsy and Traveller Community and that the ECHR is a cornerstone and vital protection for these groups.

Sałajewski Dariusz

Poland

National Council of Legal Advisers

The Court should not be granted competence to select cases for examination.
The criterion of “significant disadvantage” in Article 35 para. 3 (b) of the Convention should be deleted.
There should be no fees for lodging an individual application.
An electronic system shall be implemented to allow the applicants monitoring their cases.
All admissible cases should be subject to the Court’s judicial review. Decisions in clearly inadmissible cases may be taken by a “filtering body”.
The average length of proceedings at the Court should not exceed 12-18 months.
There should be no further restrictions of the time-limit for submitting individual applications.
Applications should be drafted and submitted on behalf of the applicants by legal professionals. This will reduce the rate of inadmissible applications and increase their legal quality.
Domestic legal aid schemes must include the possibility to request legal assistance for submitting an application to the Court.
Article 41 of the Convention should be re-drafted or replaced by a comprehensive legal framework defining consequences of establishing a violation.
Article 13 of the Convention should be amended to the effect that the right to a judicial remedy be required. An additional Protocol on effective remedies should be considered.
The concept of a Statute of the Court should be revisited.
There should be legal assistance for applicants if execution of judgments in their cases is problematic.
Victims should have standing to claim non-execution of the Court judgment under Article 46 para. 4 of the Convention.

Saura i Estapà
Jaume

Spain

Human Rights Institute of Catalonia

The European Convention should explicitly include the duty of State Parties to accept the erga omnes effect of the judgments of the European Court of Human rights.
The European Convention should also be amended in order to include the obligation to introduce in the national legislation of Member States, a review mechanism of final national judgments and decisions that have been put in question by an Court judgment.
Improve the system of free legal aid and establish a Legal Assistance fund.
Flexible interpretation of article 47 of the Rules of the Court.
Satisfaction and guarantees of non-repetition should go beyond compensatory remedies.
Include the obligation to motivate all decisions, including the inadmissibility decisions of the Single Judge formation.
Interim measures should have a binding nature.
The Council of Europe should consider introducing a system of “penalties” for States that systematically do not fulfil their duties towards the judgments of the Court (repeated lack of compliance).
A clause could be set up in order for States that are found to violate more frequently the Convention, to further contribute to the Court budget.

Schädler Robin

Liechtenstein

 

Instead of expressly agreeing on fundamental objectives, the founding states of the European Court of Human Rights preferred to create a widely accepted institution which could supposedly bear the tension of competing viewpoints. Repercussions of this approach can still be felt. I argue that the two competing visions in delivering justice, termed communitarian and egalitarian justice, result in distinct theoretical and adjudicatory missions. Since only superficial discussions on this issue are entertained among judges and academics alike, the Court fails to fulfil its promise of a dual mission and, more precisely, entertains a confused interpretation of its admissibility criteria. In short, the Court needs to come clear about its future direction. Generally, resources could be better used for authoritative, fully reasoned judgments on genuine resp. substantial human rights issues. Such approach would require a shift from an input-driven machine (“Chamber of action”) to a “Chamber of reflexion”.

Schmidt Thomas

Germany

As Secretary General of the European Association of Lawyers for Democracy and World Human Rights (ELDH)

During over 60 years the Convention has proven effective in the protection of human rights.
Tremendous progress has been made to reduce the backlog of cases following the introduction of the system of a single judge deciding on admissibility.
We caution against restricting admissibility on technical or procedural grounds.
The most effective steps are at national level by States to improve their own respect for the Convention and to improve levels of awareness of Convention rights.
It is necessary to increase the Court’s administrative, legal, and technical resources to boost: 1) capacity to keep up with applications; 2) active engagement in pre-hearing steps to reach a resolution; and 3) better promotion of its decisions.
Rights of access and engagement with the Court by individuals, NGOs and trade unions should be maintained and expanded.
The Court’s willingness to defend an integrated view of human rights incorporating both social and economic and civil and political rights should be celebrated. Both categories of rights are necessary.

Schubert Jens

Germany

United Services Union (Vereinte Dienstleistungsgewerkschaft ver.di)

Ver.di, as a defender of human rights, is strictly against a limitation of the competences of the ECHR. Please see our arguments within the contribution.

Ségol Bernadette

 

European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC)

The Convention system is, in principle, working well and effectively. But in several respects it could be improved. In any event, the system must be defended against arguments which aim at or have the effect of weakening the role of the Court in ensuring, across Europe, effective protection of human rights, and, in particular, the social rights of human beings.

Šimeček Tomislav

Czech Republic

Czech Association of Property owners - International Association of Property owners UIPI

European Convention on Human rights should provide all European citizens with effective protection against local governmental distortion of the interpretation of the Convention and ignorance of the Convention by the legislative bodies during the adoption of legal norms. The imprescriptibility of the right for compensation in the case of any violation of the fundamental human rights is the most important feature that may help to force the governments to respect the human rights. This principle is very often ignored by the local courts and gives the government possibility to avoid any responsibility. Even in countries with still strongly totalitarian system the victims are able to organize themselves and try to protect their rights through their civil associations. Settlement of complains presented by such associations should be given priority, since they are usually more general and important and solve problems of many. The present practice of the ECHR is inclined to using various excuses to reject such complains even if the excuse is more than doubtful. This encourages the governments to violate the human rights again and increases the total number of complains. The independence of the ENHR should avoid any political pressure on its work. We have been involved in the preparation and resolving of many complains of our members and we would like to help in the preparation of changes that may improve the work of ENHR and reduce the number of cases.

Simpson Nici

UK

Wish: a voice for women’s mental health

We believe that any mechanism that supports individuals to have their human rights respected and makes governments accountable is vital. Any changes to the court should be to strengthen it and augment its powers, not to weaken it or step back in the protection of human rights. The Governments of Europe must be bound by the court’s decisions.

Smith Sarah

UK

Law Society of England and Wales

This paper has been prepared by the Law Society’s Human Rights Committee. The paper focuses on Judicial interpretation. Judicial interpretation is a subject that is extremely relevant as it raises the question of the remit of the European Court of Human Rights (‘the Court’). to challenge the powers of government, for instance to consider prisoners' voting rights.
The European Convention on Human Rights (‘the Convention’) has been subject to a number of different interpretative approaches by the Court. The structure of the Convention and its open textured language allow the Court choice for interpretation. Some of these approaches have been criticised for allowing for judicial creativity and democratic illegitimacy. The lack of a consistent interpretative approach has led commentators to argue that the Court is making law, which is not the role of the judiciary. The climate of hostility towards the role of the Court in interpreting the Convention is often based on narrow understandings of the role of courts in domestic situations.
Whilst applying the ‘restrictive’ approach to interpretation and margin of appreciation may accommodate ideas of state sovereignty and democratic legitimacy, it does not accurately reflect the aims and purpose of the Convention. The Convention was devised in order to hold governments accountable for their human rights obligations under the Treaty the Court’s primary role is then to interpret the Convention in the light of European standards of human rights. This necessarily requires the Court to explain and develop normative standards, and to apply standards of interpretation that accord with international law.

Smuk-Matringe Hélène

France

 

Je ne suis pas d'accord avec la manière dont des requêtes parfaitement recevables (délai, épuisement des voies de recours, violation établie de la convention, etc.) sont déclarées irrecevables sans aucune motivation, et de plus par un courrier désagréable.

Souleliac Anne

France

Commission internationale du Barreau de Paris

Le Barreau de Paris souhaite exprimer une certaine inquiétude alors même que les Etats manifestent la volonté de porter atteinte au cœur du système de protection des droits de l’homme en Europe. Le Barreau de Paris est particulièrement préoccupé par l’entrée en vigueur du protocole n° 15 dont les dispositions portent atteinte au système conventionnel.
Il rappelle son attachement indéfectible au droit de recours individuel et s’oppose à la restriction prévue par la Cour par la notion de « jurisprudence bien établie. Le Barreau de Paris apporte en revanche son soutien à toutes les initiatives relatives à une meilleure connaissance de la jurisprudence de la Cour et il est favorable à l’introduction de procédures de « class actions » qui pourraient limiter les requêtes répétitives. Le Barreau de Paris considère que la procédure actuelle de désignation des juges « ad hoc » peut porter atteinte à l’indépendance et l’impartialité des juges. De même, il considère qu’au niveau national les procédures de sélection des candidats à la fonction de juges doivent être améliorées afin d’offrir plus de transparence et de publicité. Enfin, l’amélioration du travail de la Cour ne peut se faire qu’avec des moyens financiers accrus.

Spencer Siobhan

UK

National Federation of Gypsy Liaison Groups

NFGLG coordinates groups in building capacity to understand the law in relation to Romany Gypsy and Traveller people. We also believe in partnership working to improve the Human Rights of similar peoples i.e. Roma people. The ECHR is very important in our work and a vital protection for all the peoples mentioned. We think it is essential that it is maintained and strengthened.

Stadelmann Thomas et Garré Roy

Suisse

Association suisse des Magistrats de l'ordre judiciaire SVR-ASM

(No summary provided / aucun résumé fourni)

Telbis Ana-Maria

Romania

European Human Rights Association (EHRA) www.ehra.fr

Procedure / Just satisfaction
Extension of the prerogatives of the Committee of 3 Judges
Establishment of a default interest until implementation of general measures and of a special fund to which the amounts should be paid
Standardisation of the amounts to be paid in certain categories of repetitive cases
Procedure on requests for advisory opinions Implementation /Execution
Extension of locus standi for applicants affected by the non-implementation of general measures taken in previous similar cases
Development of the transversal effect of the execution of Court judgments
Enhanced use of Art 46 § 4 for lengthy or manifest lack of implementation of the Court’s judgments
Advancement of the personal responsibility of state officials for violations of the Convention
Capacity building
Establishment of a List of Certified Counsel following specific training under the auspices of the Council of Europe
Extension of the secondment scheme to members of the civil society
Outreach and dissemination of information
Translation of the Rules of Court and Practice Directions
Weekly case digests
Yearly case digest video
Extension of the system of table of contents with direct links to all judgments
Refinement of the HUDOC search results
Internal organisation
Enhanced use of mixed divisions

Toda Castán, Daniel

Spain

 

There needs to be a serious reflection about the reform process itself, as it has been going on for many years already and such a protracted process may involve a risk of instability for the Court and may create a strong impression of political manipulation of the Court by the states.
Certain proposals that were discussed in the negotiations leading to the Brighton Declaration should not be given any further consideration in the future. These are the introduction of fees, the introduction of penalties for futile cases, the “sunset clause” and giving the Court discretion to decide what cases to consider.
A system for the supervision of execution of judgments based on the model of the Inter-American human rights system should be examined as an alternative to the existing system.

Trechsel Stefan

Switzerland

 

This proposal takes up a previous suggestion, namely to regionalise the European system of collective judicial protection of fundamental rights and freedoms. Europe would be subdivided into a number of regions each with its own branch of the Court. These regions would have a regional human rights’ court as a branch of the Court. These courts would decide on the admissibility and merits of individual applications. Exceptionally, cases could be referred to the “Grand Chamber Court” (GCCt). A neutral Attorney General would also have the right to petition the latter. A number of difficult problems would have to be resolved, such as the composition of the regions, the seat of the regional courts, the judges assigned to the regions and in particular to the GCCt. The changes ought to bring the Court closer to the prospective applicants. 

Tymofeyeva Alla

Ukraine

 

The ideas, concerning the reform of the Convention system can be summarised, as follows:
Guide on just satisfaction. Elaboration of the guide will discourage those who apply to the Court with the only aim to obtain a substantial amount of compensation.
On-line application form. Working-out of an on-line application form, which will automatically reject applications that are out of six-month time-limit or for non-exhaustion of domestic remedies, as well as the applications incompatible with the Convention.
Fees. The system of fees may help the Court to overcome financial difficulties and make it more effective in protection of human rights. It will also discourage persons submitting an application to the Court “just in case”. Applications submitted by means of the on-line form described above (web service of the Court) shall remain free of charge. By this way an access to the Court will remain free of change. Imposition of 5 Euro fee for submission of an application by e-mail will help to reduce paperwork in the Court’s Regisrty.10 Euro fee shall be paid, where the required documents are delivered in hard copy. Some categories of persons shall be eligible for an exemption from the Court fees.

Viljanen Jukka and Heiskanen Heta-Elena

Finland

 

Our comments are related to acknowledgement of the absorbing potentials that the application of ECHR has in relation to the “dividing and tailoring” of rights. The Court has important role as a developer especially in new areas of human rights such as counter-terrorism measures, environmental, immigration and corporation related issues. The cooperation between the human rights network is also central for the interpretation of these cases. Comments are also made in relation to strategic litigation and the implementation of the judgments.

von Werdt Nicolas

Switzerland

 

In order to be an effective and respected court, the European Court of Human Rights needs reforms which significantly reduces its caseload. Hence, the Council of Europe has to make up its mind whether it wants a true constitutional court (= small[er] case load) or maintaining a court of first instance which has the aim of correcting all the wrongs that could possibly happen across Europe (= no change in the case load).

Wadham John

UK

INTERIGHTS

The context for considering the long term future should be the success of the Convention and Court in protecting and promoting human rights. The success of the Court should not result in its independence or effectiveness being curtailed. The responsibility for reducing the workload of the Court lies in the hands of the State Parties in protection rights in their own jurisdiction. The importance of right of individual petition must be a fundamental part of any future plan. More consideration needs to be given to ensuring effective and systemic action in response to the violations found by the Court in its judgments.

Wallace Stuart

Ireland

 

The Convention will be applied to extra-territorial military operations in the future. This development creates scope for a major increase in applications to the Court. The armed forces of contracting States will find it extremely difficult to satisfy the Convention’s obligations during foreign military operations. The application of the Convention to extra-territorial military operations will also create scope for clashes between Convention obligations and obligations under international humanitarian law. States should avoid these problems by derogating from the Convention, but the system for derogations in Article 15 is ill-suited to cover extra-territorial derogations. The committee should therefore consider amending Article 15 to permit extra-territorial derogations. The amendments should:
Facilitate derogations encompassing both personal and territorial forms of extra-territorial jurisdiction, possibly by permitting derogations over mission groups.
Modify the pre-conditions governing derogations so that extra-territorial derogations do not have to satisfy the threat to the life of the nation criterion.
Permit derogations from Article 2 for lawful acts in the context of either international or non-international armed conflicts.

Walter Torsten

Germany

DGB

No restriction of the competences of the Court whatsoever. The responsibility for lightening the Courts’ work burden is entirely with the member states who have to accept and execute its jurisdiction

Walton S. Ernie

USA

Center for Global Justice Student Staff helped edit this Paper

This paper argues that the Court’s fidelity to the rule of law—and not to expanding the rights guaranteed in the Convention—is what will preserve the Court’s long-term viability and success. It then argues that the Court’s use of European consensus (i.e., the living text theory), threatens the rule of law because it has been completely unpredictable. Accordingly, if upholding the rule of law is of paramount importance to the Convention’s success, the Court must abandon European consensus. Instead, the Court must adopt a more objective, predictable method for interpreting the Convention. This method must be interpreting the Convention through its historical context, not only because this ensures predictability, but also because it reinforces the notion of the Convention as a Contract and honours the transcendent nature of the rights agreed upon by the Contracting States.

Wells D

UK

Individual & Open University Rep

Areas of concern in UK Human Rights:
Right to privacy and family for women
Right to paid work and choice of work for women
Right to legal representation/compensation when violation evident for women
Right to education for women
In the UK the rights of women with children are being violated by District Councils, ex partners or employers with access to data protected under the data protection act, who use that information to jeopardise/control/deny income, employment, housing and legal rights. New ways to reduce the impact of socio economic injustices need to evolve. When UK local/national government fails this must be brought to the attention of the Legal Community and the European Council on Human Rights to allow just satisfaction and compensation.
Comparative assessment by human rights organisations like BIHR facilitates clear judgements of discrimination. Take the REAL example of two women neighbours A & B. A is a single 56 yr old with no children or qualifications who moved into a Ahouse 1 year ago, she is paid £19000 yr and works 1 mile from home. B is a 36 yr old graduate mum (partner absent) from a local family in temp work £6000 yr. She travels 20 miles to work and has lived in Bhouse for 10 yrs.
The example proves discrimination in income and employment, although B’s needs are greater and qualifications higher. If data protection breaches by local government councils are also evident, there is social discrimination. Equality legislation should protect individuals with children in employment, housing and their access to legal/health/educational services. The UK Equality Act 2010 works in theory, not in practice. Employers, District councils and ex partners who support unjust discrimination, inequality, data violation and abuse go unpunished. This is because many women do not have access to legal advice and representation.
If the current system does not work, what could work?
ECHR to support UK Government to introduce Universal credit is effective way to limit access to private information by district, town and parish council staff. This could avoid future data protection misconduct by local government.
ECHR to encourage UK Government to make Changes to legal aid to allow those who own property, on low or no income (because of discriminatory practice by previous employers or ex partners) access to free legal advice and representation.
ECHR to encourage UK Government to Allow workers access to union membership to protect women’s rights at work to a pension, redundancy, paid leave and secure contracts.
ECHR to encourage UK Government to Raise awareness of women’s human rights sanctioned in the Human Rights Charter on equality, work, education, family, law and privacy.
ECHR to encourage UK Government to Raise awareness of children’s rights, sanctioned in Rights of the Child legislation within education and local government.
ECHR to encourage UK Government to Raise awareness of the 2010 Equality Act
ECHR to encourage UK Government to Improve information and access to processes that bring violation in the human rights of women to the attention of the ECHR.

Werd Marc

The Netherlands

ECHR and EU co-ordinator of my Court – editor in chief of European Courts weblog: http://europeancourts.blogspot.nl/

I would like to point out a few challenges for the organization of national courts with regard to the effective application of ECHR case law. In my opinion we need to focus on more intelligent ways of distributing information to make the Convention work better on a national level. In the long run that too will contribute to the Courts’ subsidiary role.

Whitwell Chris

UK

Friends, Families and Travellers

Our organisation works on behalf of Gypsies and Travellers, who are among the most marginalised and excluded groups within the UK. We have carefully studied the submissions of Garden Court North and those of the Community Law Partnership and wish to support their representations. In the UK there are between 20,000 and 25,000 Gypsies and Travellers living in caravans and trailers who have no authorised site on which to place their home but who are constantly evicted from one unauthorised encampment to another. The ECHR is a vital tool for ensuring the protection of these very vulnerable groups and we believe it essential that it is maintained and strengthened.

Wisniewski Adam

Poland

Chair of International Public Law, Faculty of Law and Administration, University of Gdańsk, Poland

It is argued that the future role of the Strasbourg Court as a constitutional Court of Human Rights for Europe should be wisely defined. The Court should not abandon its activism in the sense of ruling in favour of the protection of human rights. However, the Court should be wisely activist, being aware of both the value of keeping the equilibrium of the whole ECHR system as well as taking into account of the value of European pluralism. If the wide reform of the ECHR system is carried out, it would be important to prudently reformulate the ECHR’s Preamble, also because of its impact on the Convention’s interpretation. It should refer also to other important principles of the interpretation of the Convention regarded as its ius, such as the living-instrument, the proportionality and fair balance, the practical and effective rights approach and the autonomous interpretation. Moreover, margin of appreciation should be clearly linked with respect for European pluralism and diversity as its fundamental raison d’être.

Wnukiewicz-Kozłowska Agata

Poland

Medical Law and Bioethics Interdisciplinary Research Centre - Department of Public International and European Law - Faculty of Law, Administration and Economics - University of Wrocław

There is no doubt that the human rights protection system developed by the Council of Europe is a valuable and significant achievement. It constitutes a cohesive, effective mechanism capable of addressing new challenges in the defence of fundamental rights and freedoms. The existence of a tested and properly-functioning system does not, however, exclude the possibility of its further evolution and expansion. In my further remarks I would like to draw attention to three issues: the advisory jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights, the necessity of expanding the scope of that authority (not only as envisioned under Protocol 16), and the matter of further extension of the Court's jurisdiction associated with the development of new technologies in biology and medicine (for example, by expanding its jurisdiction to other conventions, which is foreseen in the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Dignity of the Human Being with regard to the Application of Biology and Medicine.

X

   

To overcome the perception that it is “affordable” for states to violate human rights, increase awards for violations. The Court could impose dissuasive, exemplary damages or “fines” to discourage further violations. This “revenue” could feed into the Human Rights Trust Fund or another arrangement designed to support improvements in member states.
“Affordability” of violations is also linked to pre- and in-ECHR length of proceedings. Particularly serious cases that go to the root of human rights or democracy could be fast-tracked (e.g. cases revealing systemic concern about freedom of expression – hence democracy – in a country). In such cases, there could be an acknowledged policy of waiving exhaustion of domestic remedies. Resort to Rule 39 – e.g. in cases concerning safety of human rights defenders, journalists or whistle-blowers – if only as a means of manifesting the state’s potential positive obligations.
Inter-state cases could be encouraged or a “defender of the general interest” type of figure could be established to support or take the initiative in cases of major importance (e.g. mass surveillance across Europe).
A designated Chamber for all such major cases?
In order to offset the resulting possible increase in workload, measures to discourage or dismiss quickly minor, inadmissible or vexatious applications.

Y

   

Académie virtuelle pour le système de protection des droits de l’homme CEDH (porte d’entrée audiovisuelle facilitant l’accès à des textes juridiques et politiques) :
Série d’enregistrements vidéo et/ou audio, visant à rendre plus accessibles pour un large public la jurisprudence de la Cour dans diverses matières, et présentés dans une cohérence pédagogique avec les standards normatifs du Conseil de l’Europe.
Une liste évolutive de thèmes « parlants », sélectionnés dans le corpus de la jurisprudence de la CEDH, avec une priorité donnée aux thèmes d’actualité et à ceux qui concernent le plus grand nombre des Etats membres.
Vulgarisation (prendre vulgariser au sens de simplifier, faire comprendre, capter l’attention, donner envie d’en savoir plus) des principes distillés de la jurisprudence, à l’image des fiches de jurisprudence CEDH actuellement utilisées par un public bien plus large que celui visé au départ.
Equipe de haut niveau composée d’académiciens, de juristes et de professionnels des médias.
Adapté à l’environnement numérique, l’outil facilitera la promotion et le partage à grande échelle, et son élaboration pourra ouvrir des horizons d’interaction plus soutenue entre la Cour et les instances politiques du Conseil de l’Europe, voire d’autres institutions internationales, en fonction des thèmes.