Human Rights and Policing in Ireland
This book assesses the powers, practices, and processes of Garda (Ireland's police force) for compliance with international best practice in human rights standards. It offers a unique critique of the law, policy, and practice on policing in Ireland from a human rights perspective. The book is divided into four sections, with Part I examining human rights and policing in general. It offers a detailed and comprehensive account of human rights standards applicable to key aspects of policing, such as: arrest * detention * interrogation * the right of access to legal advice and medical treatment * the taking bodily samples * stop and question/search * entry, search, and seizure * surveillance * the use of informers * the improper use of intelligence * public order * the use of force * the treatment of victims * the treatment of ethnic minorities * complaints * internal discipline * accountability to the law * governance and democratic accountability * gender and diversity in the composition of the police organization * the rights of police officers with respect to trade union membership, political activity, and disciplinary procedures. The human rights standards on each of these aspects are extracted from international sources, such as: the European Convention on Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the UN Basic Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms by Law Enforcement Officials, the Council of Europe's Code of Police Ethics, the reports of the Council of Europe's Committee on the Prevention of Torture, the jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights, and examples of best practice from other jurisdictions. This is supplemented by an account of relevant Irish human rights standards as extracted from Ireland's Constitution, the common law, and legislation. On each of these key aspects of policing, attention is drawn to how and where Irish law falls short of international best practice and what is needed to remedy the deficiencies. Part II offers a structured and comprehensive account of the human rights concerns that have affected policing in Ireland over the past decade or so. It gives an overview of the human rights failings that have been revealed by sources, such as: the Morris Tribunal of Inquiry into events in Donegal * the Barr Tribunal into the fatal shooting of John Carthy at Abbeylara * the Garda Siochana Complaints Board and Ombudsman Commission * the European Committee on the Prevention of Torture * judgments from Irish courts * the Ionann Human Rights Audit on the Garda * investigative journalism. Part III offers a critique of the Garda policies and processes that have been and are being taken to address the human rights deficiencies outlined in Part II. This includes an expert analysis of the internal formulation and dissemination of human rights policies and the monitoring of compliance with those policies and human rights standards within the force. In Part IV, the book concludes with a body of broad recommendations on the further actions that are needed to ingrain human rights standards at the heart of all aspects of policing in Ireland.
Publication Date: 3/1/2009