How being watched changes how justice is done: ‘Insider’ Perspectives

It is a fundamental principle that justice should not only be done, but should be seen to be done. With nobody watching, ‘open justice’ is simply an abstract ideal. But how does being observed change how justice is done?

Does being watched change how justice is done? A researcher’s reflections

Now seems like an ideal time to reflect on what we have learned about the relationships between open justice and social justice and to discuss with those working across other courts and tribunals how our experiences intersect with theirs – what we might learn, and how we might maximise our impact.

Excluding the public from Court of Protection hearings: A case before Mr Justice Keehan

By Celia Kitzinger, 7th Jan 2020 Open justice. The words express a principle at the heart of our system of justice and vital to the rule of law. …. Open justice lets in the light and allows the public to scrutinise the workings of the law, for better or for worse. (Lord Justice Toulson R (Guardian News andContinue reading “Excluding the public from Court of Protection hearings: A case before Mr Justice Keehan”

Disability, Social (In)visibility, and the Importance of Open Justice

“…t is my view that society should be made aware of how it treats its disabled members – and that ‘social invisibility’ is a form of willful ignorance, and an unjust privilege. Oppression thrives in darkness, and it is most efficient and effective in silence and in isolation…”

Psychiatric Survivors’ Views on Advance Consent and ‘Forced’ Treatment

“… I remain hopeful that by highlighting cases such as Paul’s and learning from lived experiences of psychiatric survivors, we can make small steps that will lead to better experiences of treatment for those in mental health crisis.”

When Expert Evidence Fails

A hearing before Mr Justice Poole (COP 13551368) listed for three days (26-28 October 2020) was adjourned, only part-heard, because of inadequate reports from the expert witness. The expert witness, Dr Q, a consultant psychiatrist, gave evidence that the person at the centre of the case (let’s call her Barbara) lacked mental capacity to make any of the decisions before the court. His evidence simply collapsed under cross-examination.

From black letter law to real-life decision making

Editor’s note: This is a report of a later hearing in the same case as the one covered in a previous blog here. By Lucy Williams, 29 October 2020 I am studying a module on Health Care Law at the University of York.  We explore how decision-making capacity is determined on the basis of the Mental Capacity ActContinue reading “From black letter law to real-life decision making”

A COVID-Secure Attended Hearing

By Adam Tanner, 28th October 2020 Over the past seven years I have worked within the justice system and have been an observer as a law student and PhD researcher in several hundred in-person court hearings.   Since the lockdown restrictions commencing in March 2020, there has been a new feel to the justice system inContinue reading “A COVID-Secure Attended Hearing”

Where P should live

“One of the most relevant and pleasing aspects of the hearings has been the evident attention paid to the involvement of P in proceedings. Although P did not attend any of these hearings, what did come across and was clearly conveyed was a real sense of P as an individual and what their views, wishes and feelings were/are in relation to the life-matters affecting them.”

Ethical issues in restraining patients for dialysis

“…Two aspects of Paul’s treatment particularly interest me. First, that the restraint required is rather extreme. Second, that the patient had expressed a clear desire to be restrained as he wants to be dialyzed…”