Socio-legal insights in the time of COVID-19:
- Social care regulation at Work: Research undertaken by Professor Lydia Hayes and her project team (in collaboration with UNISON in the North West of England) shows severe breaches in Health and Safety regulations for social care workers. Findings from a survey of 2,600 care workers employed in over 1,000 different care-settings reveal widespread fear about the transmission of SAR-CoV-2 virus and serious breaches of legal safety standards. A vast majority of care workers feel unprotected at work, they believe they will not be paid wages if they self-isolate and care workers are battling with the consequences of confusion at policy level about the use and availability of PPE. Read the news report online; the full report is available here; and visit the project website
- Twitter thread by Professor Lydia Hayes addressed to @MattHancock, drawing attention to the Social Care Regulation at Work project recommendation that Government step in on public health grounds to ensure that care workers are paid their average wages when they need to self-isolate
- Press coverage of Professor Lydia Hayes’s social care regulation research includes:
- Care workers unable to self-isolate as they are denied sick pay – ‘appalling’ (Express)
- Incompetent approach to care homes is risking lives (Morning Star)
- Research led by Professor Lydia Hayes for her project on Social Care Regulation at Work is quoted by Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, in a BBC Newsnight interview to highlight the urgent need for social care reform – he cites the finding from the project’s survey of 2,600 care workers employed in over 1,000 different care settings that that 8 in 10 care workers believe they would not be paid wages if they had to self-isolate.
- Social care regulation: In an article for Tribune,’They Don’t Really Care About Our Carers‘ Professor Lydia Hayes says: ‘Hollow words from the government can’t disguise the reality facing the UK’s care workers – underpaid, overworked, insecure and now facing a pandemic without essential protective equipment.’
- Making Sense of the Crisis: Who cares? Professor Lydia Hayes joined a panel for The People’s Assembly Facebook Live on ‘Making Sense of the Crisis: Who cares?’ on Thursday 30 April
- Care Workers Don’t Need Badges, They Need Proper Sick Pay. New research shows that 80% of care workers believe they will lose wages if they self-isolate. The time for tokens is over – the government needs to act today to improve working conditions. By Hannah Walters, part of the Social Care Regulation at Work team led by Professor Lydia Hayes
- Trident nuclear deterrent: Professor Nick Grief is among a group of signatories to a letter sent to all MPs, questioning whether the UK’s Trident nuclear weapon system should remain on ‘Continuous at Sea Deterrent patrol’ as the costs of COVID-19 spiral
- Health and disability: On being haunted by your body – As some states restrict access to life saving medical treatment for COVID-19 in ways that exclude many people with disabilities, Dr Flora Renz questions our notions of health & disability and invites us to re-imagine society..
- IEL Collective Conversations (the IEL Collective is a network of scholars dedicating to critically evaluating the theory, practice, and impact of international economic law)
- International Economic Law and COVID-19: In this video by the IEL Collective, Dr Luis Eslava and Tara Van Ho (Essex Law & Human Rights Centre) discuss two issues stemming from the intersection of international economic law and the COVID-19 pandemic
- Right to Food: In this video by the IEL Collective, Dr Luis Eslava talks to Dr Michael Fakhri (Oregon Law), the newly appointed UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. Together with Clair Gammage (Bristol Law), and Annamaria La Chimia (University Nottingham School of Law), they discuss Dr Fakhri’s new mandate and the impact of the current COVID-19 pandemic on food and international trade.
- Dr Luis Eslava comments on news that the US state of Missouri is suing China: “Missouri’s lawsuit is symptomatic of a wider and well-documented trend in the use of law as a political tool in the US and around the world.”
- From an Italian hotel to a US state, coronavirus ‘lawfare’ takes off: Dr Luis Eslava’s expert comment features in this article published in The Guardian
- Informal Work and Public Health in Colombia: Targeted Regulation during the COVID-19 Global Emergency: Dr Luis Eslava and Professor Donatella Alessandrini have been awarded almost £5,000 by the University’s GCRF Emergency Response Fund for a project titled ‘Informal Work and Public Health in Colombia: Targeted Regulation during the COVID-19 Global Emergency’. Their project will compile the first comprehensive database on the volume and characteristics of informal work in Colombia. This will focus on the size, diversity and localisation of informal work; the vulnerability of informal workers in sectors not covered by current isolation measures; and their localisation in COVID-19 hotspots, with a view to informing ongoing government and wider efforts to combat the spread of the virus
- Humanity’s Catastrophe: Following Sylvia Wynter in the Age of Coronavirus an article by PhD legal scholar Anamika Misra for Critical Legal Thinking
- Expert comment: What of human rights amid COVID-19? Sian Lewis-Anthony says: ‘…we may be witnessing a worsening of conditions for many of the poorest and most vulnerable in our communities, and an incremental increase in coercive powers of the state.’
- Contract law, social force majeure and adjusting consumer credit contracts: On his CreditDebtandInsolvency blog, Professor Iain Ramsay considers the significance of initiatives implemented by the Financial Conduct Authority in response to the Coronavirus pandemic, particularly in relation to “thinking about and the teaching of contract law, and in particular the approach of the law to changed circumstances affecting contract performance”
- Big Saturday Read: Beware of bribery in the name of charity by Dr Alex Magaisa
- Humanitarian Complicity in the Global Legal Order: Dr Sara Kendall has been awarded £49,000 from the Leverhulme Trust to undertake a research fellowship on the topic of ‘Humanitarian Complicity in the Global Legal Order’ during the 2020-2021 academic year
- Informal Work and Public Health in Colombia: Targeted Regulation during the Covid-19 Global Emergency: Dr Luis Eslava and Professor Donatella Alessandrini have been awarded almost £5,000 by the University’s GCRF Emergency Response Fund for a project titled ‘Informal Work and Public Health in Colombia: Targeted Regulation during the COVID-19 Global Emergency’. Their project will compile the first comprehensive database on the volume and characteristics of informal work in Colombia. This will focus on the size, diversity and localisation of informal work; the vulnerability of informal workers in sectors not covered by current isolation measures; and their localisation in COVID-19 hotspots, with a view to informing ongoing government and wider efforts to combat the spread of the virus
- Law and Everyday Memorialisations: Sir John Hawkins in Chatham: Dr Emily Haslam and Dr Suhraiya Jivraj have been awarded £1630 by the Society of Legal Scholars Research Activities Fund for a project titled ‘Law and Everyday Memorialisations: Sir John Hawkins in Chatham’. The project will investigate the commemoration of John Hawkins, England’s first slave trader, in the everyday landscape of Chatham. The aim is to understand the extent to which legal processes account for, or have contributed to, controversies surrounding historical figures and facilitated their commemoration, and uncover how different communities in Chatham understand this memorialisation
- Evidencing + combatting hate crime in India: concepts, mindsets, processes: Professor Amanda Perry-Kessaris has been awarded £4,580 by the Society of Legal Scholars Research Activities Fund for a collaborative research project with Mohsin Alam Bhat and Joanna Perry titled ‘Evidencing and Combatting Hate Crime in India: Concepts, Mindsets and Processes‘. The project will conceptualise who reports, records and responds to hate crime in the Indian context and assess how this forms an actual/potential ‘system’. It will also use designerly strategies such as collaborative prototyping to co-create shared understandings of current hate crime reporting and recording, and to shift mindsets among civil society actors and impact-oriented academics.
Articles, books, blogs, chapters and expert contributions:
- Meaningful impact of Kent Law School research: Dr Kirsty Horsey‘s Second Report of the Surrogacy UK Working Group on Surrogacy Law Reform (December 2018) was cited by the UK Supreme Court in paragraph 67 of their judgment for the case: of Whittington Hospital NHS Trust (Appellant) v XX (Respondent) – UKSC 2019/0013
- Big Saturday Read: a blog by Dr Alex Magaisa
- Critical analysis of the Supreme Court of Zimbabwe Judgment concerning a longstanding legal wrangle over the leadership of the MDC-T. There were two substantive issues. The first major issue was whether appointments of deputy presidents made by the founding President of the MDC-T, Morgan Tsvangirai in 2016 were lawful. The second concerned the legality of Nelson Chamisa’s rise to the Acting Presidency of the MDC-T in February 2018
- Political dynamics of the MDC conflict
- Criminal Justice Notes: a blog by Professor Dermot Walsh
- Police Pre-Charge Bail in England and Wales: The UK government’s current consultation on relaxing the current restrictions on the use of pre-charge police bail threatens to roll back the reforms introduced in 2017 to combat its apparent overuse and abuse
- Enforcing a suspended sentence across EU Member States: In its recent decision in A.P C-2/19 (26th March 2020), the Court of Justice of the European Union opened the door to a suspended sentence handed down in one Member State being enforced in another Member State under the guise of a probation measure
- Some light in the dark: Kent Law Clinic Director Graham Tegg recounts some notable successes secured for people in our local community by staff, students and volunteer lawyers during the lockdown
- Decades Later, The Perpetrators Of The Genocide In Rwanda Will Face Justice: an article by KLS PhD scholar Ewelina Ochab for Forbes
- Sri Lanka Wakes From The Ashes As The First Anniversary Of The Easter Attacks Approaches an article by KLS PhD scholar Ewelina Ochab for Forbes
- Decolonial Dialogues: A new shared space for exchanging and advancing ideas and information about the decolonisation of knowledge – through activism, research, inclusive teaching and learning and creativity. Contributors include Ahmed Memon
- Power to the people: A new fire safety checklist will help tenants in risky residences force local authorities to take action: An article by Dr Ed Kirton-Darling and Professor Helen Carr published in the April/May 2020 issue of Built Environment
- Decolonizing the Academy – Between a rock and a Hard Place: An article by Dr Suhraiya Jivraj for a special issue of the journal Interventions (International Journal of Postcolonial Studies). Dr Jivraj co-edited the article with colleagues from the Decolonising Sexualities Network.
- Decolonial Sexualities: Paola Bacchetta in Conversation with Dr Suhraiya Jivraj and Sandeep Bakshi for a special issue of Interventions (International Journal of Postcolonial Studies) published by @tandfnewsroom.
- The regulation of acupuncture in France and the UK: Shifts and fragmentation in contrasting healthcare systems: an article by Professor Emilie Cloatre and Francesco Salvini Ramas for Medical Law International (Vol 19, Issue 4)
‘International Criminal Justice and Humanitarianism‘: a book chapter by Dr Sara Kendall and Dr Sarah Nouwen, in the Oxford Handbook of International Criminal Law
- Tracing lines in the lawscape: Registration/pilgrimage and the sacred/secular of law/space: an article by PhD legal scholar Jess Smith for The Sociological Review