Sir James Michael Dingemans, styled The Rt Hon Lord Justice Dingemans, is a Court of Appeal judge, who was recently appointed as the lead judge for International Relations with effect from 26 February 2021. He was appointed to the Court of Appeal in 2019, has been the Vice President of the Queen’s Bench Division since February 2020 and previously served as a High Court judge. Having grown up as a naval child and residing in a multitude of countries such as Singapore, Gibraltar and Scotland, his Lordship stresses the imperative nature of a global perspective.
Zaki Sarraf began his career as a paralegal at Descartes Solicitors before securing a competitive internship as a Legal Protection Caseworker with the United Nations Refugee Agency. He then moved on to work as a Legal Advisor for St Andrew’s Refugee Services and as a Senior Caseworker for Duncan Lewis Solicitors, specialising in Public Law and Human Rights.
Amanda Pinto QC is an expert barrister in international financial wrongdoing, corporate crime, fraud, money laundering, and corruption cases with an international dimension. She was appointed a QC in 2006. She is highly ranked by directories in both’ Financial Crime: Corporates’ and ‘Financial Crime’.
His Honour Nic Madge started off his illustrious career as a human rights lawyer before transitioning into a more judicial role. He became a successful district judge before moving on to become a circuit judge, trying criminal cases that involved serious and highly emotional offences. As a judge, he became a member of the Judicial Studies Board as a senior judicial trainer, both in the UK and abroad.
He has given lectures on a range of legal topics all over the world, including at international conferences in France, Belgium and Ireland. He has trained judges in Malta and drafted legal guidelines for Rwanda. He also participated in Human Rights Missions to Ankara with Amnesty International and to Mexico with FIDH.
James is currently the Legal Director of Global Projects for LexisNexis, a prominent global provider of legal, government and business information sources. He is also the Executive Sponsor of their Rule of Law and Corporate Social Responsibility projects and has previously referred to the rule of law as being the ‘cornerstone’ of his career.
He has previously received training for mental health in the workplace and is a huge advocate of mental wellbeing amongst those in the corporate sphere. James works very closely with the International Law Book Facility on Rule of Law projects.
He acknowledges and has previously personally experienced feelings of imposter syndrome (even as an established lawyer) and speaks to how he had tackled this issue. As he is a strong proponent of access to legal advice and education, he believes that students should develop this passion for the rule of law and involve themselves in such projects at university and further into their career.
Outside of his legal career, he is also an avid football player and an FA Level 1 Football Coach who trains his son’s football team.
Starting a conversation & focusing on the bigger picture: missing pieces of current hate crime prevention measures
It’s of no contention that the numbers of reports of hate crimes have been consistently increasing over the last decade, reaching over a hundred thousand reports in 2018/19 according to official Home Office statistics. But these numbers are difficult to interpret. Why? Well, one of the issues relating to tackling hate crime is the fact incidents are frequently underreported, and it doesn’t take an expert in the field to start listing reasons why. Reporting is complex, time-consuming, involves talking to a police officer and has no purpose unless the pile of evidence stands tall.
Our arrival unto the world is marked by “their” presence. Marriages would be incomplete without “their” performances, “their” blessings. The halt at the traffic light is one of the most likely places to spot “them”. But why is it that their presence is only restricted to such occasions? Why are they not present in our classrooms? In our offices? Why are they not our neighbours? Or our friends? “Their” existence and conditions are synonymous to the English idiom ‘elephant in the room’; they exist but they are seldom part of our daily conversations, daily life. In fact even if this article ends without naming “them”, it will not be a task for the readers to identify them- such is their pervasiveness in the Indian society.
The coronavirus pandemic has acted to highlight and exacerbate the failures in access to justice for domestic workers in India. The spread of Covid-19 and the ensuing lockdown measures implemented by the Government of India to contain its spread has had a profound impact on work and workers. In India, women employed in paid domestic work have been amongst the most critically hit. As per the National Sample Survey Organization, there are as many as four million paid domestic workers in India, though unofficial data suggests that there might be close to 90 million.
India is perhaps the only country where the constitutional guarantee of non-discrimination is not backed by a comprehensive legislation. While Article 15(1) of the Indian Constitution posits a mandatory duty upon the State to not “discriminate against any citizens on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them” (Vertical Anti-Discrimination); Article 15(2) places a similar obligation upon Indian citizens, to not discriminate against fellow citizens, in terms of granting them access to public-spaces (Horizontal Anti-Discrimination). These articles are in addition to a discrimination-free commitment in public-employment under Article 16(2) and a broad guarantee of a right to equality under Article 14.
In March 2020, the High Court of Singapore by the way of its decision in the case of Ong Ming Johnson v. Attorney-General and other matters upheld the validity of its colonial sodomy law, namely the Section 377A of the Singapore Penal Code yet again. This section criminalises the act of ‘gross indecency’ among two male persons by punishing them for a maximum term of 2 years. The issues raised in this case were premised on the constitutional validity and interpretation of Section 377A and its nature vis-e-vie the constitutional rights of liberty, equality and freedom of expression as envisaged under Articles 9(1), 12(1) and 14(1)(a) of the Constitution of Singapore. The judgement which was pronounced by Judge See Kee Oon justified the existence and legality of Section 377A on the arguably unfounded grounds of public morality and religious harmony. Continue reading “Singapore High Court denies justice, again.”
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