The Baring Foundation submitted this response to the call to evidence by the UK Government’s Independent Review of Administrative Law in Autumn 2020 which is tasked with examining the use of judicial review.
The submission draws particularly on the ways our grantholders and others have used judicial review to protect women and girls from violence.
It starts with the following general comments before going to address specific questions posed by the Call for Evidence.
- We see judicial review as a fundamental and legitimate tool for civil society in the UK to use in protecting the rights of individuals against an overbearing state. Civil society is often the first to see instances or patterns of decision making that are unlawful and is frequently best-placed to provide quantitative and qualitative evidence to assist the court.
- Civil society frequently supports vulnerable claimants through the judicial review process and amplifies the voices of communities in challenging unlawful public decision making. Our experience suggests that substantive or procedural changes that narrow access to judicial review have a disproportionate impact on those facing the most acute forms of discrimination and disadvantage.