Evidence on the replacement power to stop and search without reasonable suspicion
In April 2011# the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights issued a call for evidence about the call for evidence on urgent Remedial Order made by government in March 2010. The Order was intended to introduce immediately a new stop and search power for the police to replace the ‘section 44’ (stop and search) power# under the Terrorism Act 2000# which had been found to be incompatible with the European Convention on Human Rights and was suspended in July 2011.
In its evidence the Commission concluded -
- that the urgent need for a remedial order in Northern Ireland was weakened because stop and search powers are contained in the Justice and Security Act (NI) 2007 which had been relied on since the suspension of the section 44 power under the Terrorism Act 2000# and
- that a remedial power would be preferable as long as it complied with the Europran Convention on Human Rights and# importantly# included safeguards to prevent stop and search being exercised arbitrarily.