Posts Tagged ‘india’

IB imageSnapshots of law, gender and sexuality news from the past couple of weeks

Abusive Treatment of Indigenous Women in Canada

Gita Keshava, Durham University

On January 30, 2014 representatives from Human Rights Watch testified before the Special Committee on Violence Against Indigenous Women in the Canadian House of Commons. They urged the government to set up an independent national inquiry to investigate the current violence experienced by indigenous women and girls, in order to create a system that will ensure greater accountability with regards to police misconduct, and ultimately hold them responsible for their actions or lack thereof. In February 2013, Human Rights Watch published a report specifically investigating the protection of indigenous women and girls in northern British Columbia (BC). It highlighted the fact that police continue to use excessive force, and physical and sexual assault against indigenous women and girls. In order to target these issues, Canada needs to ensure that there is a police complaint mechanism, that oversight procedures are in force, and that there is a requirement for independent civilian investigations into reported incidents of police misconduct. In addition, the government needs to establish a commission to investigate the murders and disappearances of indigenous women and the link that these events have with police mistreatment, especially in relation to the Highway 16, now commonly known as northern BC’s “Highway of Tears.” These concerns, although specifically relevant to Indigenous women and girls, remain a serious issue for all women in British Columbia and in Canada more generally.


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Lim and CheeNeil Cobb, University of Manchester

The High Court of Singapore has rejected a constitutional challenge to section 377A of the Singapore Penal Code, which criminalizes ‘gross indecency’ between men, in Lim & Chee v Attorney-General.

The High Court’s judgment, issued in April, is a blow for LGBT rights activists in Singapore who might have hoped that the court would follow the lead of courts across Asia which have read down so-called “sodomy laws” on constitutional grounds in recent years, including the Court of Appeal in Hong Kong (2006), the Supreme Court of Nepal (2007), and the Delhi High Court in India (2009).

This post sets out the background to the litigation and the substance of the High Court’s decision, before considering what the future holds for struggles over section 377A in Singapore.


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IB imageSnapshots of law, gender and sexuality news from the past month

Targets in the Legal Profession

Catherine Day

On 10 January, Law Society President Lucy Scott-Moncrieff recommended the introduction of gender targets and embedding flexible-working practices in corporate culture, in order to improve gender diversity across the legal profession. Only 23.5 per cent of all partners and 9.4 per cent of all equity partners across the UK’s largest 100 law firms by revenue are women. Firms including Ashurst, Eversheds and Hogan Lovells have already introduced targets for the number of women in high-level positions.


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