We have drafted written evidence in response to a call from the House of Commons General Committee on the Northern Ireland (Ministers, Elections and Petitions of Concern) Bill.
Our response mostly focuses on Clause 5 of the bill, which concerns the ‘Petition of Concern’ mechanism. We reflect on the proposed reforms to the Petition of Concern and highlight the risk that – without further redress – other mechanisms will simply continue to be used as alternative ‘vetoes’. We explore possible redress through a broader return to the intention of the Good Friday Agreement, which was such mechanisms be safeguards linked to objective rights and equality requirements, rather than allowing them to operate as mere political vetoes.
Download the written evidence here.
Previously, we also published a briefing note on the bill.