Committee o n Economic, Social and Cultur al Rights
List of issues in relation to the sixth periodic report of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland *
1.In the light of paragraph 15 of the State party’s report, please further explain to what extent the rights contained in the Covenant have been incorporated in the domestic legislation of the State party, including its overseas territories and Crown dependencies. Please provide additional information on the new bill of rights intended to replace the Human Rights Act 1998 and whether it will provide adequate protection of all the rights enshrined in the Covenant. Please also provide examples of cases in which Covenant rights have been invoked before, and/or applied by, domestic courts.
2.Please provide information on measures taken, including legislative and regulatory measures, as well as policies and guidance, to ensure that corporations respect economic, social and cultural rights throughout their operations, including when operating abroad, in particular in the extractive sector and commercial operations involving the appropriation of land.
3.Please explain why the applicability of the Covenant has not been extended to Anguilla and why essential information on the implementation of the rights contained in the Covenant in this territory is not available.
II.Issues relating to general provisions of the Covenant (arts. 1-5)
4.Please provide information on the steps taken by the State party to ensure that austerity measures introduced through the Welfare Reform Act of 2012 do not disproportionately affect the enjoyment of economic, social and cultural rights, in particular by disadvantaged and marginalized individuals and groups.
5.Please explain whether the different anti-discrimination legal frameworks available in the State party, including the Equality Act 2010, provide an equal level of protection and access to an independent equality body with regard to all grounds of discrimination, as provided for in article 2 (2) of the Covenant. Please indicate whether the State party envisages adopting comprehensive and harmonized non-discrimination legislation with applicability in all jurisdictions of the State party.
6.Please explain to what extent the measures taken to combat discrimination in all jurisdictions of the State party, including its overseas territories and Crown dependencies, have improved the enjoyment of economic, social and cultural rights,by marginalized and disadvantaged individuals and groups.
7.Please provide information on the results of the implementation of the State party’s strategy to overcome gender inequality, set out in the paper entitled “The equality strategy: building a fairer Britain” and in the Think, Act, Report initiative (see E/C.12/GBR/6, para. 21), particularly with regard to the enjoyment of economic, social and cultural rights by women.
8.Please also provide information on the measures taken to address the existing gender pay gap, as well as vertical and horizontal occupational segregation by sex, in all jurisdictions, including in the overseas territories and Crown dependencies.
9.In the light of the Committee’s previous recommendations (see E/C.12/GBR/CO/5, para. 20), please provide information on the impact of the measures adopted to address unemployment and how they have improved access to work opportunities among the most disadvantaged and marginalized individuals and groups, including persons with disabilities and ethnic minorities, as well as young people. Please also provide comprehensive data on access to employment, disaggregated by age, sex, ethnic group and region, including in the overseas territories and Crown dependencies.
Article7–The right to justandfavourableconditionsofwork
10.Please indicate whether the national minimum wage that has been introduced in the State party provides workers and their families a decent living.
11.Please provide information on the specific measures adopted and their impact in order to ensure that the working conditions of all migrant workers are in compliance with article 7 of the Covenant. Please also provide information on how the new Modern Slavery Act of March 2015 is being enforced and whether dissemination activities relating to the content of that Act have been carried out among employers and migrant workers. Please provide information on the investigations and sanctions imposed in cases in which the right to just and favourable conditions of work of migrant workers has been violated.
12.Please provide information on measures adopted by the State party to prevent accidents and work-related diseases and to ensure that occupational health services, including compensation, are available for all workers throughout all of the State party’s jurisdictions.
13.Please provide information on the measures adopted to effectively enforce the new regulation adopted to prevent the blacklisting of trade union members. Please also provide information on the adoption and content of the trade union bill and whether it contains any exemptions to the trade union rights contained in the Covenant.
14.Pleaseclarifywhatsocialassistanceschemesareavailableforpersonsworkingintheinformaleconomy,aswellasfornon-nationals,includingasylumseekers,refugeesandmigrants. Please also provide information on whether essential services for rejected asylumseekers are available throughout the State party.
15.Please indicate whether the new proposed reforms to the social security system in the Full Employment and Welfare Benefits Bill will ensure a minimum amount of social assistance benefits that provides an adequate standard of living for the system’s beneficiaries and their families.
16.Please provide information on the concrete measures that have been adopted to make childcare services available, accessible and affordable throughout the State party. Please clarify to what extent the costs of childcare services prevent disadvantaged groups from accessing them.
17.Please provide information on access to justice and on the protection and support services available to victims of domestic and gender-based violence. Please indicate the number of cases investigated and brought before the courts, and the penalties imposed on the perpetrators.
18.Please provide information on the experience of the State party in preventing child and forced marriage, as well as in effectively implementing its legislation on female genital mutilation. Please also provide information on the number of cases that have been investigated and prosecuted and explain what specific mechanisms have been established to provide effective protection, support and rehabilitation services for victims of female genital mutilation, including awareness-raising and training for front-line service agencies.
Article11–The right to an adequatestandardofliving
21.Please clarify how the poverty line is determined in all jurisdictions of the State party, including in the overseas territories and the Crown dependencies, and where it currently stands in relation to the cost of living. Please provide updated disaggregated data on the poverty rate in the State party and information on measures adopted to reduce poverty, particularly among children and the most marginalized and disadvantaged individuals and groups.
22.Please provide information on how the State party ensures that all individuals, in particular members of disadvantaged and marginalized groups, have access to adequate and affordable food. Please also provide information on measures adopted to address food insecurity and to reduce the reliance on emergency food aid from food banks.
23.Please provide concrete information on how current housing policies and welfare reform are contributing to addressing the housing deficit in the State party. Please provide statistical information on the supply of social and affordable housing, especially for the most disadvantaged and marginalized individuals and groups, including middle- and low‑income individuals and households, young people and persons with disabilities. Please also provide information on how security of tenure is guaranteed, particularly in the private rental sector, and on the measures adopted to protect tenants from forced eviction.
24.Please provide updated data on the extent of homelessness in the State party, disaggregated by sex, region and ethnic group. Please also explain to what extent the measures adopted by the State party have contributed to reducing homelessness and indicate the number of reception facilities, including emergency shelters, hostels and social rehabilitation centres, that are available in the State party.
25.Please provide information on the measures adopted to ensure that the Gypsy and Traveller communities have access to appropriate and culturally adequate residential and transit accommodation throughout the State party, with adequate access to basic services, such as water and sanitation. Please indicate what measures have been adopted to protect persons living in informal settlements from forced eviction.
Article12–The righttophysical and mental health
26.Please provide updated statistical information on how the implementation of the Health and Social Care Act 2012, and the Equality Delivery System in England and the Healthcare Quality Strategy for the National Health Service in Scotland have contributed to reducing inequality in access to health-care services. Please provide additional information on measures taken to ensure the accessibility and affordability of health-care services for all individuals and groups, including migrants, asylum seekers and refugees, as well as Gypsies and Travellers.
27.Please indicate what steps are being taken to ensure the availability and accessibility of adequate mental health services throughout the State party, including in the overseas territories and Crown dependencies. PleasealsoprovideinformationonthelegalframeworkinplacetopreventinvoluntaryhospitalizationandtheuseofinvoluntarymedicaltreatmentintheStateparty.
28.In the light of the Committee’s previous recommendations (see E/C.12/GBR/CO/5, para. 25), please explain what concrete steps are being taken to amend the legislation of Northern Ireland on abortion. Please provide information on the measures taken to ensure that sexual and reproductive health services and information are available and accessible to all persons.
Articles13and14– The righttoeducation
29.Please provide information on the measures taken to ensure equal access to primary and secondary education by all children, especially children belonging to ethnic minorities, or the Gypsy or Traveller communities, as well as the children of migrants, refugees and asylum seekers.
30.Please provide information on the measures taken by the State party to ensure that higher education, in practice, is accessible to all, in particular by gradually decreasing university fees.
31.In the light of the Committee’s previous recommendations (see E/C.12/GBR/CO/5, para. 37), please indicate whether the draft strategy for protecting and enhancing the development of the Irish language, mentioned in paragraph 83 of the State party’s report, has been adopted, and provide updated information on the progress made towards adopting an Irish language act.
32.Please provide information on the steps taken by the State party to ensure that everyone benefits from scientific progress and its application, the development and dissemination of science and culture, and the development of international contacts and cooperation in the scientific and cultural fields.