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Children’s Commissioner calls for comprehensive impact assessments of Government’s judicial review proposals

Response to the judicial review consultation published

The Office of the Children's Commissioner for England has published its response to the proposals of the Ministry of Justice for reform of judicial review.

The Government has sought views on a package of measures to stem the growth in applications for judicial reviews. The consultation, which closed on the 24th January, sought views on proposals in three key areas: reducing the time limits for bringing a judicial review; applying for permission to bring a claim; and fees for judicial review proceedings.

The OCCE urges the Government to publish a full and comprehensive equality impact assessment, and also undertake a Child Rights Impact Assessment of the proposals in the consultation document. It says that the proposed changes are likely to have a significant impact on the proportionate and proper protection afforded to children under the law and it is important that the likely impact is fully considered before being implemented.

The bulk of the response focuses on judicial review in relation to age assessments of unaccompanied asylum applicants claiming to be children on arrival in the UK. This is both because this is an important area of work on which this Office has undertaken significant work, and one which illustrates the relevance of a robust and accessible judicial review process in providing rights protections and redress for some of the most vulnerable children and young people in the UK.

The response is available her and the consultation document itself here.