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The RPC welcomes the report of the Independent Commission on UK Public Health Emergency Powers

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Better regulation, Independent scrutiny

Last week the Independent Commission on UK Public Health Emergency Powers published its final report reviewing the emergency public health laws and parliamentary procedures associated with the Covid-19 pandemic. Stephen Gibson, Chair of the RPC, provided oral evidence to the Commission last year.

The RPC welcomes the report and commends Sir Jack Beatson, the 12 other commissioners and the team at The Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law for their efforts.

The RPC particularly welcomes the support for its own activity in challenging Government to ensure all decisions are properly evidence based. The report recommends (at para 151) that “As a matter of best practice, governments should set out the anticipated impact of regulations made using the affirmative procedure before any parliamentary approval debate takes place. Where this is not possible, if any provision within the made affirmative regulations is to be continued in substantially the same form beyond the original two month sunset period, then an impact evaluation should be provided to the legislature in advance of the subsequent approval debate.”

We trust that the Government will consider the report seriously and act on the recommendations.

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