Strasbourg Observers

Announcement: Webinar on Human Rights in the Time of Coronavirus (7 April)

April 03, 2020

Dear readers,

This week, an interesting debate took place on our blog regarding the necessity and/or desirability of derogation under Article 15 in the context of the Covid-19 crisis. The poll we launched yesterday on this question is still quite tight, indicating that many people continue to disagree on the path to take. At Strasbourg Observers, we are therefore very happy to support continued debate on this question in the form of a webinar, which will take place next Tuesday (7 April) at 4 pm UK time, 5 pm CET. Here is the announcement:


Human Rights in the Time of Coronavirus: Does England’s Lockdown Violate Human Rights Law?


7 April 2020, 4 pm (UK time)

The panellists will discuss whether England’s recent Health Protection laws are consistent with the European Convention on Human Rights, in the context of the wider discussion on the human rights dimensions of measures taken in response to the pandemic within the Council of Europe. A key question is whether the member states of the Council of Europe need to derogate from the Convention to implement these emergency measures. The webinar will particularly address the following questions:

  1. What is the impact of current regulations in England on the rights enshrined in the Convention?
  2. Is a derogation from the Convention necessary to implement these measures?
  3. Why have some States (Moldova, Georgia, Romania etc.) considered it necessary to derogate, while others (UK, France, Italy) have not?
  4. Assuming a derogation is not required, would it be preferable to derogate in any case?



Chair: Dr Stuart Wallace (University of Leeds)

Dr Ed Bates (University of Leicester)

Prof Başak Çalı (Hertie School)

Prof Kanstantsin Dzehtsiarou (University of Liverpool)

Dr Alan Greene (University of Birmingham)

Dr Natasa Mavronicola (University of Birmingham)


Informational support:

International Law and Human Rights Unit (University of Liverpool)

Centre for Law and Social Justice (University of Leeds)

SLS Human Rights and Civil Liberties Section

Hertie School


Update (08/04): for those of you who were unable to join, the recorded version of the webinar is available on YouTube

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