Wednesday, 14 August 2019

The School of Law Annual Distinguished Lecture 2019 is being held in conjunction with the Sheehy-Skeffington Annual Distinguished Lecture on Friday 27th of September 2019.  This year, our Annual Distinguished Lecture will be delivered by Justice Leona Theron of the Constitutional Court of South Africa.  The title of the lecture is ”Are we all Equal? Is the new South Africa’s promise of true equality a reality or still a dream?” This is our ninth Annual Distinguished Lecture. Previous speakers include: Professor Christopher McCrudden of Oxford University, Judge John T. Noonan of the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, Professor Neil Walker of Edinburgh University, Baroness Brenda Hale of the UK Supreme Court with Mrs. Justice Catherine McGuinness of the Irish Supreme Court, Mr. Justice Nial Fennelly of the Irish Supreme Court, Sir Declan Morgan, the Lord Chief Justice of Northern Ireland, Professor Nicholas Canny and Judge Síofra O’Leary. We will be arranging a reception and will have further information closer to the date. Justice Leona Theron: Justice Theron was born in KwaZulu-Natal on the east coast of South Africa.   She attended Natal University from 1984 to 1988 where she completed a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Laws.   In 1989 she was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship by the American Government to study in the US.   She obtained a Master of Laws degree from Georgetown University in Washington DC in 1990.   Whilst she was in the States, she worked for the International Labour Organisation in Washington DC and for a firm of attorneys in Los Angeles. On her return to South Africa at the end of 1990, Justice Theron practiced as an advocate and also lectured at the University of Natal.  In 1995, she was appointed by former President Mandela as a member of the Judge White Commission which was tasked with assessing various contentious decisions that had been taken in the Public Service.  On 15 October 1999, she was appointed as a Judge of the High Court.  At the age of 32, Justice Theron was the then youngest judge in the country and was the first black female judge to be appointed in the province of KwaZulu-Natal.  After serving as a High Court Judge for eleven years, Justice Theron was appointed as a Judge of the Supreme Court of Appeal.  She was the then youngest member of the Supreme Court of Appeal.  On 1 July 2017,  Justice Theron was appointed to the Constitutional Court, which is the apex Court in the Republic of South Africa.  Justice Theron’s rise from humble beginnings in a poor segregated township in South Africa, to the highest court in the land has been described as nothing short of spectacular and as an achievement against all odds. Justice Theron is well known for a number of leading judgments and, in particular, for her fierce defense of women’s rights.  In 2008, she handed down a seminal judgment in the KZN High Court in the matter of Gumede v President of the RSA.  Justice Theron ruled that certain statutory provisions which discriminated against women who were married under African customary law were unconstitutional as they constituted unfair discrimination on the grounds of race and sex.  Her judgment was later upheld by the Constitutional Court.  Whilst acting at the Supreme Court of Appeal, Justice Theron wrote a powerful dissent against the majority judgment in State v Nkomo who had reduced the sentence of a convicted rapist.  In doing so, Justice Theron emphasized the need for Courts to be mindful of their duty to send out a clear message to potential rapists and the community that they are determined to protect the equality, dignity and freedom of all women.  In a groundbreaking judgment on racism in the workplace, Justice Theron recently wrote a unanimous judgment on behalf of the Constitutional Court in Rustenburg Platinum Mine v SA Equity Workers.  Her judgment sets a precedent for the proper approach to sanctioning racist remarks in the workplace. Even more recently, Justice Theron’s majority judgment in Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality v Asla confirmed that organs of state and private parties contracting with the state no longer have the protection afforded by time bars to escape the consequences of patently unlawful and invalid contracts. Justice Theron has been described as an activist.  She was also a founding member of the South African Chapter of the International Association of Women Judges.  She sits on a number of boards, and has delivered papers at numerous conferences, both within South Africa and internationally.  Justice Theron has, over the years, received numerous awards for her contribution to the development of justice in South Africa. 

Thursday, 1 August 2019

Congratulations to our colleague, Dr Shivaun Quinlivan, and to our former colleague, Prof. Gerard Quinn, whose work was cited yesterday by the Irish Supreme Court in a landmark decision on disability equality law. Other work by Dr Quinlivan, and by students of the LLM in International and Comparative Disability Law and Policy, was previously incorporated in the General Comment on Article 5 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). The General Comment, which addresses equality and non-discrimination for persons with disabilities, was adopted by the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities last year. Dr Quinlivan and Prof. Quinn are experts in disability law, and the citation of their work is a testament to the quality of their research, and to its national and international impact. The incorporation of wording by our LLM students in the General Comment demonstrates the very high quality of their work also, and their strong commitment to social justice. Our congratulations to all concerned, and also to Dr Quinlivan, who led the group, on this wonderful achievement. The full decision of the Supreme Court is available at: http://www.courts.ie/Judgments.nsf/09859e7a3f34669680256ef3004a27de/0036387fa70d0e74802584480046ab2b?OpenDocument The General Comment on Article 5 of the CRPD is available at: https://www.ohchr.org/en/hrbodies/crpd/pages/gc.aspx

Thursday, 1 August 2019

Legislation developed by the School of Law at NUI Galway has been passed by the Oireachtas. The Land and Conveyancing Law Reform (Amendment) Act 2019 enables courts to consider better solutions for distressed mortgagers. The Act has its genesis in the Keeping People in their Homes Bill, which was introduced in the Dáil in 2017 by Minister of State, Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran TD. This legislation was originally inspired and drafted by Dr Padraic Kenna, Senior Lecturer in Housing and Property Law at NUI Galway, and NUI Galway Alumnus, Eugene Deering, BA, LLB, LLM, and Special Adviser to Minister Moran, following detailed research at the Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy Research in NUI Galway and discussions with Department of Justice officials. The original Bill contained the key provisions of the new Act, including the critical ‘proportionality test’ – finding the outcome involving least interference with rights of respect for home, and taking into account the circumstances of all household members, advocated by Dr Kenna and Mr Deering. Dr Padraic Kenna, School of Law, NUI Galway, said: “This legislation builds on existing Government initiatives designed to assist people in mortgage distress, and reflects government policy of keeping people in their homes, and ensures that the circumstances of everyone living in the home, including children, are fully considered in mortgage possession cases.” Minister of State, Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran TD, presented and advanced the Act in the Oireachtas. The passage of the legislation was facilitated by officials in the Department of Justice and Equality, former Minister, Frances Fitzgerald (now MEP), and current Minister, Charles Flanagan TD. It was also supported by Jim O’ Callaghan TD, Fianna Fáil spokesperson for Justice and Equality, and passed by agreement of all TDs in July 2019.The legislation enables a court or registrar to consider whether the making of a possession order would be proportionate in all the circumstances, whether the lender has put forward a statement to the borrower which would enable the borrower and their dependants to remain in the home and settle the matter, and “additional matters it thinks appropriate.” The court must now also consider the circumstances of the borrower and any dependants living in the home. This will include the circumstances of any children, and persons with a disability.The new Act also enables a court or registrar to consider any proposal made by the borrower to the lender, which would allow him/her, and any dependants, to remain in the home, or to secure alternative accommodation – as well as the response of the lender to that proposal. The court will be able to review the conduct of the mortgage lender, as well as the borrower, in their attempts to find a resolution.Dr Charles O’ Mahony, Head of the School of Law at NUI Galway, said: “This significant legislative development will enable Irish courts to fully consider the circumstances of those at risk of losing their home. It was inspired and drafted originally in the School of Law, following detailed research on EU developments, and clearly demonstrates the impact of our research and engagement at NUI Galway’s School of Law.” The Act is available to download at: https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/bills/bill/2019/19/For more information about the Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy Research, NUI Galway, visit: http://www.nuigalway.ie/chlrp/-Ends-

Tuesday, 18 June 2019

The School of Law NUI Galway has been named ‘Law School of the Year 2019' at the Irish Law Awards, securing the prestigious accolade for the first time.Outperforming the other Law Schools, NUI Galway's School of Law has a strong reputation for research and has made significant changes to its undergraduate law programmes over the past year. The School has also introduced a number of new law degrees, to include: Law & Business, new 2019 Law & Human Rights, new 2019 Law & Taxation, new 2020 Law Criminology & Criminal Justice, new 2020 In a year of firsts, the School of Law were part of legal history in March of this year when the highest court in Ireland, the Supreme Court, would sit in the Aula Maxima, NUI Galway. This was be the first time that the Supreme Court would sit outside of a courthouse since it returned to the Four Courts in 1932, the first time it would sit in Galway and only the third time the court would ever sit outside of DublinRebecca McKittrick, a Masters graduate from NUI Galway’s School of Law was selected as a finalist in the ‘Law Student of the Year’ category. Additionally, the Hon Mrs Justice Catherine McGuinness a great friend of the School of Law and Chair of the University’s Governing Authority received the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ at the ceremony. Dr Charles O’Mahony Head of the School of Law said: “This is wonderful recognition of the School of Law, Irish Centre for Human Rights and Centre for Disability Law and Policy. We have strengths across research and learning, teaching and assessment.  This is also tremendous recognition of our collective contribution to our city, region and broader society through our scholarship and work on law and public policy engagement.  We were delighted to see our student Rebecca McKittrick selected as a finalist in the ‘Law Student of the Year’ category. The ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ conferred on the Hon Mrs Justice Catherine McGuinness is fitting recognition of her extraordinary career and enduring commitment to the law, justice and public service.” Professional Work Placement / Study AboardAll students studying law at NUI Galway have the opportunity for students to gain real world experience through work placement or study abroad in the third year of their degree.  The School of Law has partnered with local, regional, national and internationally recognised law firms and businesses who offer high quality professional work experience for our law students.Students can also choose to avail of the opportunity to study abroad with partner institutions, transforming their university degree into a truly global experience.  The School of Law has partnered with leading universities in Australia, Canada, China, Europe and the United States. Innovation in Teaching, Learning & AssessmentThe School of Law works closely with students to support transition from secondary school to university, and to build the skills necessary for their law degree and career.  NUI Galway places the development of these skills at the heart of our law degrees.  In first year, students spend their first four weeks creating a solid skills foundation by concentrating on research, case analysis, statutory interpretation, legal citation and legal writing.  Once foundational skills are in place, students are then introduced to substantive subjects. School of Law Research & EventsThe School of Law is committed to engaging with the legal professions through events that inform public policy and practice.  The School delivers a wide range of conferences, summer schools, lunchtime talks and seminars every year.  These events are open to the public, complement student learning and provide Continuing Professional Development (CPD) points to local legal community. The School of Law has an excellent research reputation. Staff publish with leading publishers and University presses (Harvard, Cambridge, Oxford, Hart & Routledge), and in the leading international law journals. A strong focus on public policy engagement has always been a key strength of School and Centres and in its research and teaching.  The School of Law also has an excellent track record of securing competitive research funding.Congratulating the School of Law on their award, President of NUI Galway, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, said: “On behalf of colleagues at NUI Galway, I extend warmest congratulations to Charles and his team in the School of Law on securing the title of Law School of the Year at the Irish Law Awards. This recognises and respects the immense work and dedication which the School has demonstrated over recent years in providing excellent opportunities for students and for developing a range of innovations to our distinctive course offerings.  I am also delighted to see the Hon Mrs Justice Catherine McGuinness receive the Lifetime Achievement Award. Justice McGuinness has been an adjunct professor at the School of Law since 2005.  She is one of Ireland’s leading jurists and has been a progressive and reforming force in Irish legal history over her lifetime.   As Chair of NUI Galway’s Governing Authority since 2013 she has made an enormous contribution to the governance of our University. On behalf of NUI Galway I extend our warmest congratulations as her achievements are so justly recognised by the Irish Law Awards in this way.” Awards for Galway Law FirmsA number of Galway based law firms were also honoured at the Irish Law Awards. Alastair Purdy & Co. Solicitors received the Connacht/Ulster & Munster Employment Law Firm of the Year award.  MacSweeney & Company received the Connacht/Ulster Law Firm of the Year, Connacht/Ulster Litigation Law Firm of the Year and the Connacht/Ulster & Munster Family Law Firm of the Year awards. Blake & Kenny Solicitors received the Connacht/Ulster Property Law Firm/Team/Lawyer of the Year award.

Wednesday, 19 June 2019

TUTORING POSITIONS Every year, the Law School offers tutorials to our undergraduate and LL.B. students in the core Irish law subjects. Applications are invited for tutoring positions in the following subjects:  Administrative Law Company Law Constitutional Law Contract Law Criminal Law Land Law Law of Equity Law of Torts Understanding the Law Applicants must hold a 2.1 undergraduate law degree.  If you are interested in tutoring in the academic year 2019/20, please submit a one page CV to Tara Elwood, Law School, NUI Galway (t.elwood@nuigalway.ie) by Friday 28th June 2019, indicating your preferred subject area(s).  The Law School anticipates that interviews will be held week commencing Monday 29th July 2019.

Tuesday, 21 May 2019

Dr Ioanna Tourkochoriti was one of the organisers of the 8th Annual Conference of the Younger Comparativists Committee of the American Society of Comparative Law was held on May 10th-11th at McGill School of Law. Prof Maximo Langer (UCLA, ASCL Vice President) delivered a keynote speech on “Plea Bargaining and the Global Administration of Criminal Convictions”. The Conference offered the opportunity to 60 early stage comparative law scholars from all over the world to discuss their work in a supportive and constructive spirit. Dr  Tourkochoriti is a co-chair of the 2019 Annual YCC Conference Program Committee More information on the event can be found on the McGill website.

Thursday, 11 April 2019

In early March 2019, the Supreme Court held a historic sitting in NUI Galway, but a major judgment delivered by the Supreme Court today (11 April 2019) involved, in a sense, the Law School at  NUI Galway going to the Supreme Court. In the case in question, People (DPP) v Mahon the Court dealt with two important matters. The first was the manner in which a trial judge should interpret a jury verdict when there is some ambiguity as to the basis in which it was reached, a problem that can sometimes arise where a person charged with murder is convicted of manslaughter. The second dealt with principles and guidelines for the sentencing of manslaughter. This was the first time the Supreme Court had issued sentencing guidelines for any offence, and it involved a departure from a decision the Court had reached in 1988 that it would inappropriate to give sentencing guidance of this nature.  Among the sources on which the Court drew when setting out the guidelines was an article by Dr Diarmuid Griffin published in the Irish Jurist in 2015 on the release and recall of life prisoners. That was not the only NUI Galway connection. The appeal was argued by Tom O'Malley of the School of Law who acted as lead counsel for the State (with Anne Marie Lawlor SC and Gareth Baker BL).

Friday, 22 March 2019

Congratulations to Dr Connie Healy of the School of Law who has been awarded Irish Research Council (New Foundations) Funding to undertake research into the Unified Family Courts system in Baltimore, USA. This comes at a time where there has been a renewed call for specialist family courts in Ireland highlighted by research undertaken by the Child Care Law Reporting Project led by Dr Carol Coulter and the report of the Special Rapporteur for Child Protection, Dr Geoffrey Shannon. Dr Healy’s doctoral research into Conflict Resolution within the Family Law System was also funded by the IRC.

Friday, 22 March 2019

A very successful launch of ‘eConveyancing and Title Registration in Ireland' a co-edited book by Sandra Murphy, solicitor and Dr. Padraic Kenna, took place in the President’s Drawing Room in the Aula Maxima, National University of Ireland, Galway on Friday 15th March. Ms. Justice Mary Laffoy, Judge of the Supreme Court (retired) and President of the Law Reform Commission, launched the book with Dr. Charles O’Mahony as Master of Ceremonies. The book, published by Clarus Press, follows a conference held in 2017, chaired by the Honourable Ms. Justice Mary Laffoy and Mr. Justice Michael Peart and brought together national and international experts in the area of land law and conveyancing. The book represents a significant milestone in the development of a system of electronic conveyancing for Ireland.

Friday, 22 March 2019

The Irish Centre for Human Rights launched the on Thursday, 28 February, 2019.  Ms Gráinne O'Hara, Head of the Department of International Protection at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, gave the keynote address reflecting  on her experience of working with refugees in Mexico, the former Yugoslavia, Burundi, Sudan (Darfur), the US, Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq.  Ms O’Hara also spoke to the need for highly qualified postgraduates in the area of migration and forced displacement, both at the policy level and in the field: “At a time when human mobility, and forced displacement in particular, is to the forefront of so many highly charged political discussions, the value of academic discipline on the distinct but related issues of migration and refugee flight comes into its own. The LLM in International Migration and Refugee Law and Policy on offer from the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI is a case in point. A clear understanding of the relevant legal frameworks, coupled with evidence-based analysis on field realities, is critical to good policy making.” The LL.M in International Migration and Refugee Law will commence in September, 2019 and is the only course of its kind on offer in an Irish university.  The Irish Centre for Human Rights, as one of the world’s premier university-based institutions for the study and promotion of human rights, is uniquely placed to deliver this course.  The programme enables the development of expertise in international, regional and domestic law, policy and practice in the areas of migration, human trafficking and refugee law.  There is the opportunity to combine the study of international migration with specialised courses in international humanitarian law and peace operations, gender and law, child rights, and international criminal law.The core-teaching programme is supplemented with an exciting programme of guest seminars, workshops and conferences engaging with leading experts and practitioners in the field of refugee protection, human trafficking, international migration, human rights law and public policy.

Wednesday, 30 January 2019

Dr Lucy-Ann Buckley has been promoted to Senior Lecturer in Law at NUI Galway. Dr Buckley previously lectured at the University of Warwick and the University of Limerick. She specialises in equality law, labour law and family property law, and is currently co-leading a major project advising the States of Guernsey on the development of multi-ground equality legislation. She is also a member of the Berkeley Comparative Equality and Anti-Discrimination Study Group, where she is a member of the Sexual Harassment Working Group and the Disability Rights Working Group. Dr Padraic Kenna has been promoted to Senior Lecturer in Law at NUI Galway. Padraic is the Director of the Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy and is leading a project on integrating housing rights into the EU institutional economic governance framework. Padraic has recently published Loss of Homes and Evictions across Europe – A Comparative Legal and Policy Examination. (Cheltenham, Edward Elgar). This book provides a comparative assessment of human rights, administrative, procedural and public policy norms, in the context of eviction, across a number of European jurisdictions. Through this comparison the book exposes the emergence of consistent, Europe-wide standards and norms.

Thursday, 17 January 2019

A new book on 'Loss of Homes and Evictions across Europe', edited by Dr Padraic Kenna of the Centre for Housing Law, Rights, and Policy and the School of Law, NUI Galway, has recently been published by Edward Elgar.  The loss of a home can lead to major violations of a person’s dignity and human rights. Yet, evictions take place everyday in all countries across Europe. This book provides a comparative assessment of human rights, administrative, procedural and public policy norms, in the context of eviction, across a number of European jurisdictions. Through this comparison the book exposes the emergence of consistent, Europe-wide standards and norms. With contributions from experts across Europe, the chapters provide an assessment of eviction procedures in 11 jurisdictions, including Germany, France, Spain, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. Each chapter examines a number of factors relating to evictions in the respective jurisdiction, such as, the human rights and legal framework, nature and extent of evictions taking place, risk factors leading to evictions and relevant best practice guidance. All together, this book will make a significant contribution to the understanding of the similarities and differences between eviction policies across European states.As the first work of its kind to provide an in-depth comparison of eviction policies across Europe, Loss of Homes and Evictions Across Europe will be of great interest to those who are researching European housing law and human rights law and policy. Housing law and public policy makers, and those working within associated European institutions, will also find the data and accompanying analysis invaluable for informing their work. The book can also be purchased in digital form from Google Play, with a sample introductory chapter also available.

Tuesday, 4 December 2018

Watch Anne Driscoll's wonderful Ted Talk on eye witness testimony below. Anne currently holds a Fulbright scholarship in the School of Law where she teaches law and journalism students about wrongful convictions and investigative techniques. She is also conducting research on the establishment of a National Registry of Exonerations in Ireland.

Monday, 12 November 2018

A seminar with Professor Lia Epperson (American University Washington College of Law) took place on Thursday 8 November as part of the Legal and Political Theory Events Series. The seminar on ʻAn Examination Of The Competing Constitutional Principles Of Expression And Equality In The U.S. And Franceʼ was organised by Dr Ioanna Tourkochoriti.

Thursday, 1 November 2018

The Irish Centre for Human Rights and the School of Law hosted a panel discussion with Dr Mary Robinson on the ‘The Necessity of Advocacy’ at NUI Galway on Wednesday, 24 October. A recording of the event can be watched below or on YouTube.  Opening remarks are provided by Professor Siobhán Mullally and the event was chaired by Judge Tony O’Connor of the High Court. Guest panellists include: Dr Gearóid O’Cuinn and Gerry Liston of the Global Legal Action Network; Dr Maeve O’Rourke, Irish Council for Civil Liberties and Justice for Magdalenes; Professor Donncha O’Connell, NUI Galway and the Law Reform Commission; and Professor Niamh Reilly, NUI Galway. A podcast of the event is available below: A photo gallery is now up on our Flickrpage:

Wednesday, 10 October 2018

On September 3 2018, Andrea Broderick was chosen out of 7 academic nominees of high calibre and was awarded the prestigious Edmond Hustinx Prize (€ 15,000) for her recent research activities on equality and accessibility for persons with disabilities. According to the jury awarding the prize: ‘In a short period of time, Dr. Broderick built up a very good reputation in the field of disability law and the law of equal treatment [generally]. She publishes in the major international journals in this field and is in the final stage of [co-authoring a textbook] on International and European Disability Law to be published with Cambridge University Press. She is also in high demand as a speaker at conferences around Europe and a much-appreciated lecturer in a range of different courses in both Maastricht and Hasselt [University]. The Edmond Hustinx Prize will provide her with vital resources to undertake this research’.Andrea Broderick is a graduate of NUIG, where she completed both her undergraduate and Master studies. After having undertaken the LLM in International and Comparative Disability Law and Policy offered by the CDLP, Andrea went on to complete her PhD at Maastricht University under the framework of the DREAM (Disability Rights Expanding Accessible Markets) network of researchers.

Tuesday, 9 October 2018

Address will include panel discussion with former President of Ireland and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights  The Irish Centre for Human Rights and the School of Law will host a panel discussion with Dr Mary Robinson on the ‘The Necessity of Advocacy’ at NUI Galway on Wednesday, 24 October.Dr Mary Robinson, former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (1997-2002) and the first female President of Ireland (1990-1997), has dedicated much of her life to human rights advocacy, deploying her skills as a lawyer, diplomat and political leader, to promote and defend the universality of human rights. Professor Siobhán Mullally, Established Professor of Human Rights Law, and Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway highlights the importance of human rights advocacy: “2018 marks the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the 50th anniversary of the civil rights movement. Today we see human rights, and the institutions that grew from these human rights movements, under threat in many parts of the world. At a critical and often troubling time for human rights globally and in Europe, it essential that, as lawyers, we continue to advocate for human rights, and to reflect on the urgency and necessity of advocacy. This event, and the launch of new programmes in Law (BCL) and Human Rights and LLM in International Migration and Refugee Law, will ensure that at NUI Galway, we continue to play our part in training the next generation of human rights lawyers and advocates.”Opening remarks will be provided by Professor Siobhán Mullally and the event will be chaired by Judge Tony O’Connor of the High Court.  Guest panellists include:  Dr Gearóid O’Cuinn and Gerry Liston of the Global Legal Action Network;  Dr Maeve O’Rourke, Irish Council for Civil Liberties and Justice for Magdalenes; Professor Donncha O’Connell, NUI Galway and the Law Reform Commission; and Professor Niamh O’Reilly, NUI Galway.NUI Galway is widely recognised one of the world’s centre of excellence for human rights law and policy. The Irish Centre for Human Rights is one of the world's premier academic human rights institutions. Since its establishment, the Centre has developed a global reputation for excellence in the field of human rights teaching, research and advocacy.  The School of Law will take the opportunity to launch two new courses on human rights at the event – an undergraduate degree ‘Law (BCL) & Human Rights’ and a postgraduate masters ‘LLM International Migration and Refugee Law’.Dr Charles O’Mahony, Head of the School of Law at NUI Galway said: “Next year marks the 170th year of teaching law at NUI Galway.  We are delighted that in our 170th year we will have our first intake of Law (BCL) and Human Rights students.  This is a unique undergraduate programme combining a full law degree with the study of human rights law.  We have made significant changes to our undergraduate programmes meaning that all students will undertake a yearlong professional work placement or study abroad in year three of their degree.  We are delighted to launch our Law (BCL) and Human Rights and LLM International Migration and Refugee Law at this event.  The School of Law and Irish Centre for Human Rights will continue to innovate in human rights scholarship and education and will support our students to realise their career ambitions and goals.”The panel discussion with Dr Mary Robinson entitled the ‘The Necessity of Advocacy’ will take place in the large lecture theatre of the Human Biology Building, NUI Galway on Wednesday, 24 October from 6pm to 8.30pm.  This event is free and open to the public but advance registration is essential at: www.conference.ie

Wednesday, 3 October 2018

The first workshop in the EU Economic Governance and the Charter of Fundamental Rights Project took place on Friday, 28th September 2018 in Galway. The workshop was attended by participant/experts from all over Europe and opened by the European Ombudsman Emily O’Reilly. The project is organised by Dr Padraic Kenna of the Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy NUI Galway,  and funded by Open Society Initiative for Europe.

Tuesday, 18 September 2018

A new European-wide training network for early stage researchers in the field of disability rights has received €4.1m in funding from the European Commission’s Marie Curie programme. This network is known as the DARE Project (Disability Advocacy and Research for Europe) and will be co-ordinated by the Centre for Disability Law and Policy at the National University of Ireland, Galway, with the collaboration of 7 partner institutions: the Institute for Social and Political Sciences (Portugal) , Maastricht University (Netherlands), University of Leeds (UK), the European Disability Forum, the European Association of Service providers for Persons with Disabilities, the University of Iceland and Swiss Paraplegic Research.Dr. Eilionóir Flynn, Principal Investigator at NUI Galway said “The primary aim of DARE is to equip a new generation of researchers to respond to global challenges facing persons with disabilities and policy makers. Its goal is to give legitimacy, through research, to the lived experience of persons with disabilities, as a basis for law reform.” Fifteen Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) will be recruited across the network on a full-time basis over three years starting in September 2019 and will explore and develop recommendations for disability law and policy reform in light of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. All of the researchers will also have the opportunity to gain invaluable and funded work experience with leading civil society and public service organisations such as JUSTICE (UK), AGE Platform Europe (Belgium), the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Switzerland), the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (USA), the European Network of National Human Rights Institutions (Belgium), Pi Consultancy (Netherlands), University of Limerick (Ireland), Lumos (UK), Christian Blind Mission (Ireland), European Social Network (Belgium), European Association of Palliative Care (Belgium), Pi Consultancy (Netherlands) and Vision Sense (UK).

Tuesday, 18 September 2018

The Commission on the Future of Policing published its report today. Professor Donncha O’Connell of the School of Law was a member of the Commission (appointed by the Government last year). The Commission proposes sweeping reform of policing in Ireland and in particular: A new approach to policing and community safety, which will ensure police are more visible in communities, and can focus on preventing harm; Measures to deliver a professional, ethical, modern and effective police service that is well-managed, cost-effective, properly trained and equipped; A new coherent framework for the independent oversight of policing and community safety, with a clear mandate for effective scrutiny, which will promote professional standards of policing and ensure fully independent investigation of complaints; A new framework for national security, headed by a National Security Coordinator, to pool intelligence and information and provide long-term threat assessments. The full report and background information is available at http://policereform.ie 

Thursday, 13 September 2018

We are delighted to welcome Anne Driscoll to the School of Law as a Fulbright Scholar for 2018-2019.  Anne Driscoll is an award-winning journalist (Boston Globe, New York Times, People) who has investigated wrongful convictions as senior reporter at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University and as a US Fulbright scholar (2013-2014) and project manager of the Irish Innocence Project at Griffith College Dublin.  Anne will be working with our undergraduate and postgraduate students on projects associated with her area of expertise: wrongful convictions and investigative techniques.  She is also conducting research in an effort to establish a National Registry of Exonerations in Ireland.  She will supervise final year undergraduate students under the rubric of our clinical placement programme, which is coordinated by our colleague Larry Donnelly. Anne will also work with any law students interested in her wrongful convictions research projects.  Originally trained as a social worker Anne spent years counselling court-involved adolescent girls, she remains a licensed certified social worker and is the author of a self-help series of guidebooks for girls called Girl to Girl. As a journalist, she has devoted her career to covering issues of human rights, social justice, and human development and has sought to make a difference in the world, one story at a time. She was the 2016 recipient of the Salem Award for Human Rights and Social Justice, is a Moth storyteller and the author of Irish You Were Here. She will be giving a TEDx talk entitled 'Bearing Witness' in Jacksonville, Florida on October 20, 2018.

Friday, 14 September 2018

The School of Law NUI Galway and Dr Stephen Kearns, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon, Bon Secours Hospital, Galway, are delighted to host a one-day conference on medical negligence litigation at NUI Galway on Saturday 20th October, 2018. The conference is aimed at medical and legal practitioners and will address key issues in medical negligence including how to defend medical negligence claims; how to ensure that you have received informed consent; recent statutory developments on candour and open disclosure; and key issues in providing expert evidence. Speakers will include experts on medical negligence and medical practice. We are honoured to have Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns, former President of the Irish High Court, deliver the keynote address. The final session of the conference will be take the form of a panel discussion and Q&A session. Registration: Click here for registrationDate: Saturday October 20th 2018, 10am-4.30pm Fee: €60 to include lunch and refreshmentsStudent Fee: €15 (valid student card required)CPD Hours: 5Location: Room HBB GO19, Human Biology Building, NUI Galway.Queries: Any questions in relation to the conference can be addressed to Ursula Connolly, at Ursula.connolly@nuigalway.ie Tel: (091) 493250

Wednesday, 5 September 2018

The School of Law is delighted to announce the appointment of Dr Eilionóir Flynn as Established Professor of Law in the School of Law / Centre for Disability Law and Policy. Eilionóir is the Director of the Centre for Disability Law and Policy, National University of Ireland Galway. She is a graduate of University College Cork (BCL, PhD), and published her first book with Cambridge University Press in 2011, entitled “From Rhetoric to Action: Implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.” Eilionóir’s current research interests include legal capacity, advocacy, access to justice, and the intersectionality of disability, gender and ageing. In 2014 she was awarded a European Research Council Starting Grant for the VOICES project, to document the narratives of people with lived experience of legal capacity denial. An edited collection from this project, entitled “Global Perspectives on Legal Capacity Reform: Our Voices, Our Stories” was published by Routledge in 2018. She is passionate about educating a new generation of disability activists and scholars, and will co-ordinate a new Marie Curie Training Network known as DARE (Disability Advocacy Research in Europe) of 15 early stage researchers across seven European countries from 2019-2021. In 2018 she was awarded a Wellcome Trust Investigator Award for a project entitled “Re(al) Productive Justice: Gender and Disability Perspectives.”At a national level she is actively engaged in the process of legal capacity reform, and co-ordinates a working group of over 15 civil society organizations in the fields of disability, mental health and older people on this issue. Internationally, she has supported the Secretariat of the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and in particular the working group which developed General Comment 1. She can be contacted at eilionoir.flynn@nuigalway.ie Recent Funding Successes DARE: Professor Flynn has secured €4.1m in funding from the European Commission’s Marie Curie programme for a new European-wide training network for early stage researchers in the field of disability rights. This network is known as the DARE Project (Disability Advocacy and Research for Europe) and will be co-ordinated by the Centre for Disability Law and Policy at the National University of Ireland, Galway, with the collaboration of 7 partner institutions: the Institute for Social and Political Sciences (Portugal) , Maastricht University (Netherlands), University of Leeds (UK), the European Disability Forum, the European Association of Service Providers for Persons with Disabilities, the University of Iceland and Swiss Paraplegic Research.The primary aim of DARE is to equip a new generation of researchers to respond to global challenges facing persons with disabilities and policy makers. Its goal is to give legitimacy, through research, to the lived experience of persons with disabilities, as a basis for law reform. Two new researchers from this network will be based full time at NUI Galway, and their research will focus on the intersectionality of disability and ageing, and on the roles of NHRIs and Ombudsmen in monitoring human rights obligations. Fifteen Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) will be recruited across the network on a full-time basis over three years starting in September 2019 and will explore and develop recommendations for disability law and policy reform in light of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. All of the researchers will also have the opportunity to gain invaluable and funded work experience with leading civil society groups such as JUSTICE (UK), AGE Platform Europe (Belgium), the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Switzerland), the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (USA) the European Group of National Human Rights Institutions  Pi Consultancy (Netherlands), University of Limerick (Ireland), LUMOS (UK), Christian Blind Mission (Ireland), European Social Network (UK), European Association of Palliative Care (Belgium) and Vision Sense (UK). Wellcome: Professor Flynn has received an Investigator Award of £812,835 from the Wellcome Trust for her research project entitled “Re(al) Productive Justice: Gender and Disability Perspectives”. The key goal of this project is to make visible the experiences of disabled people in Ireland seeking reproductive justice. The project will achieve its goal using three complementary approaches. First, it will critically analyse the legislative and policy frameworks regulating reproductive decision-making for disabled people in Ireland in light of human rights norms. Second, it will use an oral history methodology to document the lived experience of disabled people in making reproductive choices in Ireland. Finally, it will draw on the findings from the legislative analysis and oral histories to develop a toolkit for health and social care practitioners. This toolkit will clearly outline the applicable legal regulation of this field in a manner accessible to practitioners, and document the supports which could be used to ensure respect for the reproductive rights of disabled people in health and social care decision-making processes. Three new researchers will be recruited to join the CDLP for this project, which will run for 3.5 years from December 2018.

Monday, 23 July 2018

The President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, opened the “First Thoughts” segment at this year’s Galway Arts Festival. In this speech, the President reflected on the idea of “Home” - the core theme of this year’s festival - and commended the work of the Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy. "This university is fortunate I believe to host the Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy Research, whose work is so critical to enhancing our understanding of the housing system here in Ireland, and its complex relationship with international and European financial and monetary policy developments. The Centre is home to scholars who provide a comprehensive understanding of the role of housing, so may I quote Dr. Padraic Kenna, ‘[h]ousing addresses the basic need for human shelter, but also facilitates the essential human requirement for home’. I am obliged not to stray any further into the detail of housing policy in Ireland, not only for constitutional reasons but also because I am aware that Catriona has assembled an excellent panel to discuss housing this evening. I do, however, wish to make two more general observations at the level of principle." The full text of his speech is available here or watch the speech below:

Tuesday, 17 July 2018

Sandra Murphy, an IRC Scholar and PhD candidate in the School of Law was a guest speaker at a recent training day for the State Property Division of the Chief State Solicitor’s Office at Farmleigh House, Dublin. Sandra gave a presentation on her PhD research topic entitled: The move to eConveyancing in Ireland National and International Perspectives and facilitated a workshop on the move to the Pre-contract Enquiry system currently being developed by the Law Society Conveyancing Committee.

Wednesday, 4 April 2018

T‌he Irish Centre for Human Rights, National University of Ireland Galway   Save the date17-18 May 2018Aula Maxima, NUIG  Keynote speakers: Judge Gerard Hogan, Irish Court of AppealJudge Pinto De Albuquerque, European Court of Human Rights  Guest Speakers Hilkka Becker, International Protection Tribunal Kathryn Cronin, Garden Court Chambers Raza Husain QC, Matrix Chambers Catherine Meredith, Doughty Street Chambers Colin Smith, The Law Library Please find link below for registration:  http://www.conference.ie/Conferences/index.asp?Conference=555    Website:    www.nuigalway.ie/human_rights/Twitter: https://twitter.com/IrishCentreHRFacebook: https://www.facebook.com/IrishHumanRights  

Tuesday, 27 March 2018

The School of Law, under the auspices of the Public Law LLM, is hosting a half-day conference on Tuesday, April 17 on the theme: “Homelessness, the housing crisis and socio-economic rights.” This will bring together academic and civil society voices concerning legal and policy responses to the homelessness and housing crises. Confirmed speakers include Niamh Randall (Simon Communities), Padraic Kenna (NUI Galway), Thomas Murray (An Cosán) and Martin O’Connor (COPE Galway).Hardiman Building, NUI Galway, G0112.30-5.15pm, Tuesday April 17.You can book a place at the following link:https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/homelessness-the-housing-crisis-and-socio-economic-rights-tickets-44549735458?aff=es2

Thursday, 22 March 2018

Congratulations to Elizabeth Kamundia, a graduate of the programme at the Centre for Disability Law & Policy, who has been appointed as a Senior Human Rights Officer at the Kenyan National Commission on Human Rights. Elizabeth was a DRSP Scholar at the CDLP and was awarded the inaugural Gold Medal for the programme having graduated top of her class in 2012.

Monday, 12 March 2018

ECB directed home possessions in Ireland is undermining human rights. ECB places home loan debtors in vulnerable situations at risk of home loss with no legal representation. ECB directions show no respect for Irish courts. ** The report  is available to download here: Access to Justice and the ECB** A detailed study of 100 Courts Lists and 2,400 cases of home possession in December 2017 and January 2018 indicates that ECB direct supervision of mortgage institutions in Ireland shows no respect for the human rights law or access to justice. Access to Justice and the ECB, a research report by the Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy at NUI Galway, shows that some 70% of home loan debtors have no recorded legal representation in mortgage possession cases.  Two thirds of those defending the actions of ECB directly supervised lenders had no legal reprersentation.  A small number of people (7%) are forced to represent themselves.  In Ireland, ECB directly supervised banks include Allied Irish Banks, Bank of Ireland, KBC Bank, Ulster Bank and PTSB. The report draws on Central Bank research showing that 40% of bank and 70% of ‘vulture fund’ cases result in home possession orders. ‌‌“Access to justice for all is core to the rule of law,” Dr. Padraic Kenna, Director of the Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy said. “However, today in Ireland, we have a situation whereby home loan debtors are pitched against the legal resources ECB directed corporations, often in what appears like a David versus Goliath encounter. This is creating unprecedented pressure on Irish courts, which have relatively small numbers of judges. “Irish Circuit Court Judges and Registrars make valiant efforts to explain procedures, processes and even the meaning of legal terms to people who are at best anxious and nervous, and at worst suffering from serious illness, disorientated and emotionally vulnerable and fragile,” he continued. “This research raises important systemic questions in relation to access to justice in Irish courts in mortgage repossession or home loss cases. It also raises important questions as to whether the ECB, as an EU institution, directly supervising the entities instigating these legal actions, is actively and knowingly undermining EU law, especially consumer and human rights law. Access to justice for home loan debtors has never been more important, but sadly, also never so inequitable, unfair and unattainable.” Since 2014, the main euro-area banks have been supervised directly by the ECB in Frankfurt in relation to macro- and micro-prudential rules and capital requirements under the Single Supervisory Mechanism. European Banking Authority and ECB guidance on dealing with mortgage arrears suggest a range of options, but this is largely ignored by ECB supervised entities in Ireland. Dr Kenna pointed to the Irish tracker mortgage scandal, where over 33,000 mortgage consumers were overcharged and which resulted in at least 100 households losing their homes. This has already highlighted the systemic failure of the ECB and the Central Bank of Ireland to effectively promote EU consumer rights, he said. “The Irish tracker mortgage scandal reports reveals that many people experienced wrongful, court approved loss of home,” “This report demonstrates that with the absence of legal representation in two-thirds of ECB directed mortgage arrears cases, it is likley that similar wrongful evictions will take place, with unknown consequences for the households involved.” There are over 30,000 mortgages in arrears for over two years in Ireland, putting these households at far greater risk of losing their homes. Central Bank research shows that those in long-term mortgage arrears are more likely to be single parent (women) borrowers with three or more children; have lower net incomes and have higher mortgage debt service ratios. EU law obliges courts to assess the fairness of mortgage terms under the EU Unfair Contract Terms Directive.  They should also assess the human rights impact of an eviction on all occupants in the home – including children, older people and people with disabilities – under the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. ECB directly supervised lenders are piling possession cases into Irish courts,  and are not providing sufficient information for Irish courts to carry out “own motion assessments” for unfair contract terms in mortgages, the report finds. He said that there is a systemic non-application of relevant EU consumer and human rights law, in these proceedings, largely directed by ECB supervised entities. Furthermore, as Irish public bodies, the Central Bank of Ireland, the nationalised banks, and other State agencies involved in the home loss/ possession cases have a “public sector duty” to protect human rights under the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission Act 2014. Dr Padraic Kenna presenting the Report Access to Justice and the ECB at NUI Galway  For more information contact: Dr Padraic Kenna at padraic.kenna@nuigalway.ie Read the full press release and case studies here: Access to Justice Press Release The report has been covered in The Irish Times, Irish Examiner and Irish Legal News.

Wednesday, 28 February 2018

Job Opportunities in the European Institutions Irish is an official language of the European Union and EU institutions will be recruiting lawyer-linguists and legal translators with high competence in Irish regularly between now and the end of 2021. Over 100 Irish translators and over 30 Irish lawyer-linguists will be recruited as the derogation on the official status of Irish in the EU comes to an end. These positions are available in the European Parliament, Commission, Council, and Court of Justice, located in Brussels and Luxembourg. Pay and conditions in such positions are excellent. Types of Posts and Basic Requirements Translators translate legislation and other official documents. Lawyer-linguists, who have law degrees and/or professional legal qualifications, ensure that the various language versions of legislation are of the same effect throughout the Union. Lawyer-linguists also translate pleadings and judgments in the Court of Justice. To work as a translator, you must have perfect command of one EU language and a thorough command of at least 2 others, and a degree in any discipline. The selection procedure for translators will focus on your language knowledge and skills in translating, as well as the core competencies required of all EU officials. To work as a lawyer-linguist, you must have a perfect command of one EU language and a thorough command of at least 2 others and a law degree. Previous experience of translating legal texts and additional languages are an asset. For further information, see https://epso.europa.eu/career-profiles/languages_en Languages at NUI Galway School of Law Students in the Corporate Law and Civil Law programmes can study Legal German and Legal French. Spanish is also available to students in the Corporate Law programme.Students in the BA Law can study a range of languages including French, Irish, German, Italian and Spanish. Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge offers a Diploma in Irish, which students can study while an undergraduate at a reduced fee for NUI Galway students. Further Information To learn more about opportunities to work in the European Institutions in a translation role, please contact Ursula Connolly in the School of Law at ursula.connolly@nuigalway.ie. Obair Aistriúcháin Dhlíthiúil sna hInstitiúidí Eorpacha Deiseanna Fostaíochta sna hInstitiúidí Eorpacha Is teanga oifigiúil de chuid an Aontais Eorpaigh í an Ghaeilge agus beidh institiúidí AE ag earcú dlítheangeolaithe agus aistritheoirí dlí le hardchumas Gaeilge go rialta as seo go deireadh 2021. Tá os cionn 100 aistritheoir Gaeilge agus os cionn 30 dlítheangeolaí Gaeilge le hearcú toisc go bhfuil deireadh á chur leis an maolú ar stádas oifigiúil na Gaeilge san AE. Tá na poist seo ar fáil i bParlaimint na hEorpa, sa Choimisiún Eorpach, sa Chomhairle agus sa Chúirt Bhreithiúnais agus iad lonnaithe sa Bhruiséil agus i Lucsamburg. Tá tuarastal agus coinníollacha oibre den scoth i gceist. Cineálacha Poist agus Bunriachtanais Aistríonn aistritheoirí cáipéisí reachtaíochta chomh maith le cáipéisí oifigiúla eile. Deimhníonn dlítheangeolaithe, a bhfuil céim sa dlí agus/nó cáilíocht ghairmiúil sa dlí acu, go bhfuil na leaganacha éagsúla aistriúcháin den reachtaíocht ag teacht lena chéile ar fud an Aontais. Bíonn aistriúchán ar phléadálacha agus ar bhreithiúnais ar bun ag na dlítheangeolaithe sa Chúirt Bhreithiúnais freisin. Chun post mar aistritheoir a bhaint amach, caithfidh tú eolas críochnúil a bheith agat ar theanga amháin de chuid AE agus sáreolas ar phéire eile, ar a laghad, chomh maith le céim i ndisciplín ar bith. Díreoidh an nós imeachta roghnúcháin d'aistritheoirí ar an eolas atá agat ar theangacha agus ar do chuid scileanna aistriúcháin mar aon leis na príomhinniúlachtaí atá de dhíth ar oifigigh uile AE. Chun post mar dhlítheangeolaí a bhaint amach, caithfidh eolas críochnúil a bheith agat ar theanga amháin de chuid AE agus sáreolas ar phéire eile, ar a laghad chomh maith le céim sa dlí. Beidh buntáiste ag an té a bhfuil taithí aige/aice ar théacsanna dlí a aistriú agus a bhfuil teangacha eile ar a t(h)oil aige/aici. Chun tuilleadh eolais a fháil, féach https://epso.europa.eu/career-profiles/languages_en Teangacha i Scoil an Dlí, OÉ Gaillimh Is féidir le mic léinn ar an gclár sa Dlí Corparáideach agus sa Dlí Sibhialta staidéar a dhéanamh ar Ghearmáinis an Dlí agus ar Fhraincis an Dlí. Tá an Spáinnis ar fáil do mhic léinn ar an gclár sa Dlí Corparáideach chomh maith. Is féidir le mic léinn ar an BA sa Dlí staidéar a dhéanamh ar raon teangacha lena n-áirítear an Fhraincis, an Ghaeilge, an Ghearmáinis, an Iodáilis agus an Spáinnis.Cuireann Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge an Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge ar fáil, agus is féidir le mic léinn fochéime staidéar a dhéanamh air ar tháille laghdaithe do mhic léinn OÉ Gaillimh. Tuilleadh eolais Chun tuilleadh eolais a fháil maidir leis na deiseanna atá ann oibriú mar aistritheoir sna hInstitiúidí Eorpacha, déan teagmháil le Ursula Connolly sa Scoil Dlí ag ursula.conolly@nuigalway.ie.

Thursday, 11 January 2018

The School of Law officially launched two new postgraduate programmes on Wednesday, February 7, 2018:  LLM (International & Comparative Business Law) & LLM (General). The launch will take place in the O'Donoghue Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance. The School was also delighted to announce the appointment of Dr Thomas Courtney as Adjunct Professor. Professor Courtney is a graduate of NUI Galway, Chairman of the Company Law Review Group, Head of Compliance and Governance Practice at Arthur Cox Solicitors and was the driving force behind the Companies Act 2014. Dr Connie Healy, Programme Director of the Masters in International and Comparative Business Law and LL.M General said: "The appointment of Professor Courtney is doubly significant. Firstly, in recognising Professor Courtney's outstanding contribution to the field of Company/Business law and secondly, and importantly for all students considering a Masters in International and Comparative Law at NUI Galway, Professor Courtney's ongoing links with the School of Law means they will benefit from his expertise during small group seminars undertaken as part of their Master's degree. This, together with the opportunity to compete for five commercial legal placements and to engage in skills-based modules enhancing employability, are just some of the unique and outstanding features of the masters in International and Comparative Business Law at NUI Galway."  To coincide with his appointment, Professor Courtney delivered a lecture to students and members of the Galway Solicitors Bar Association entitled: "Effective security for corporate obligations: the creation and registration of company charges."

Tuesday, 30 January 2018

The Moot Court Module final took place on Saturday 27 January in Galway Courthouse. Congratulations to Patricia Brannick, John Cunningham and Christina Hynes who were the overall winners of the Ross O'Driscoll cup. The moot was presided over by Ms Justice Mary Faherty, judge of the High Court. Special thanks to Tom O'Malley who drafted the moot problem; Shivaun Quinlivan, Conor Hanly and Eoin Daly who acted as mentors for the teams and to Galway Courthouse for facilitating the moot. Find out more about mooting at the School of Law on our .

Thursday, 1 February 2018

NUI Galway Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy is publishing a new, user-friendly Guide to help thousands of Irish families in mortgage distress, and facing unfair evictions to understand and advocate for their rights, using vital EU consumer and human rights law. The Guide, 'Your EU Consumer and Human Rights: A Guide for People in Mortgage Distress in Ireland', published jointly with Open Society Foundations' Abusive Lending Practices Project, is also essential reading for people improperly denied tracker mortgages, or those who have been given incorrect interest calculations. ** The Guide is available to download here: A Guide for People in Mortgage Distress in Ireland ** ‌Dr Padraic Kenna, Director of the Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy at NUI Galway, and one of the authors of the report, says: "Our Guide sets out simply and clearly how existing EU law should be routinely applied to determine, firstly, whether a mortgage contract term is fair and, secondly, whether a possession or eviction notice is a proportional response to any breach of a mortgage term. By applying these EU laws, Irish courts and lawyers can really assist their clients and vulnerable defendants."The authors have stressed that the Guide is for information purposes only. It does not provide legal advice, and is not a substitute for consulting a lawyer. They suggest, within the Guide, that people share it with their solicitors. They also acknowledge, however, that a high number of people facing possession are unrepresented, due to the shortage of free and low cost legal services.The Guide has been created as part of the Open Society Foundations' Abusive Lending Practices Project, in conjunction with the Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy at NUI Galway, and a group of Irish lawyers and advocates.

Tuesday, 30 January 2018

The Committee for Employment & Social Security in the states of Guernsey have appointed Dr Shivaun Quinlivan and Dr Lucy-Ann Buckley of the School of Law and the internationally-acclaimed Centre for Disability Law and Policy to advise progress on the development of Disability Discrimination Legislation. They will advise the Committee on which country's legislation would be most appropriate for Guernsey to model its disability discrimination legislation on. They will assess the approach taken in a number of countries based on evaluation criteria which will be agreed by the Committee in consultation with key stakeholders. This will underpin the shape of the future legislation. It is hoped that a model law will be identified by the end of March, following which proposals will be developed regarding how the model legislation should be tailored to the Guernsey context. The Committee is aiming to consult with the public on developed policy proposals before the end of 2018. Further information can be found at the official website at the states of Guernsey.

Friday, 18 January 2019

The School of Law, NUI Galway hosted  a seminar on  Court Reform on Wednesday, 17th of January 2018 in the Aula Maxima. The seminar featured a keynote address from Mr Justice Frank Clarke, Chief Justice of Ireland and a response from Mr Tom O'Malley, Senior Lecturer, School of Law.  Professor Siobhan Mullally, Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights,  chaired the seminar. Read more in the Irish Times and the Irish Independent. The event was livestreamed on Facebook and a video of the seminar can be watched below. Download: Keynote Address: Chief Justice Speech 17 Jan 2018 Response: The Allocation of Criminal Jurisdiction

Monday, 18 December 2017

The Centre for Disability Law and Policy are delighted to announce that the 10th International Disability Law Summer School will take place from Monday 18th June Friday 22nd June 2018 in Galway.  The theme will explore Intersectionality. The Summer School seeks to equip participants with the insights and skills necessary to translate the generalities of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities into tangible reform for persons with disabilities. We look forward, as usual, to a world-class Faculty and participants from around the globe including persons with disabilities, civil society groups, advocates for disability law reform, academics, lawyers, policy makers and policy analysts. More information and draft programme will follow in the New Year. Information from the 9th International Disability Law Summer School available here:http://www.nuigalway.ie/cdlp/summer_school/about.html REGISTRATION OPENS JANUARY 2018

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

 Council of Europe finds that Ireland violated the European Social Charter the right of the family to social, legal and economic protection.The Council of Europe has today upheld a Collective Complaint that Ireland has violated Article 16 of the European Social Charter on the right of the family to social, legal and economic protection. Adequate housing is viewed as an integral element of this right.The Council of Europe held that Ireland failed to take sufficient and timely measures to ensure the right to housing of an adequate standard for a significant number of families living in local authority housing, and therefore there is a violation of Article 16 of the Charter in this respect.This Collective Complaint was facilitated by the Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy at NUI Galway, working in association with local tenants groups in the main cities, law centres and Non-Government Organisations, involved the submission of detailed evidence of housing conditions on local authority estates, with associated human rights standards. Some 90% of the estimated 130,000 Irish local authority tenant households live on estates.Dr Padraic Kenna, Director of the Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy at NUI Galway today welcomed this landmark decision, saying: "We have been working with tenants groups, law centres, national and international human rights agencies, over the past five years. Our students at the University researched the European human rights norms. This decision marks a significant historical development, which could enhance the development of Irish State housing policy."The Irish State does not support any national organisation of its tenants, who could be consulted or participate in framing legislation or housing policy, unlike almost every other European country. There was no opportunity, within Ireland, for these tenants to have the collective issues examined in any systematic way. They could submit this European Complaint only through other organisations. Many issues faced by Irish local authority tenants could be resolved by tenants associations.Dr Kenna added: "Of course, nothing in this complaint was intended to diminish respect for the valuable and dedicated work of national and local authority housing professionals, or the committed work of voluntary and community groups and public representatives, who work tirelessly to improve the situation of local authority tenants in Ireland. This issue is more complex. State housing in Ireland generates a surplus after maintenance costs are deducted from rents. A recent report from the National Oversight and Audit Commission (NOAC) shows that local authorities generated a surplus of €40 million in 2014, from their housing, used to cross-subsidise other services."The Council of Europe noted that complete statistics on the condition of local authority housing have not been collated since 2002. It also noted that a significant number of regeneration programmes have not been completed, leaving many local authority tenants in unacceptable housing conditions.Significantly, housing standards for 30,000 tenants of approved housing bodies are now regulated by the Residential Tenancies Board, but there is no such regulation of State tenancies. Indeed, the State is both the landlord and the regulator on housing standards in local authority housing.The Irish State must report to the Council of Europe within 12 months on how it has addressed this violation.The full decision and a summary is available at: https://www.coe.int/en/web/turin-european-social-charter/-/the-decision-on-the-merits-of-the-complaint-fidh-v-ireland-is-now-public


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