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Constitutional implications of COVID‑19

Inquiry

The Covid-19 pandemic and the Government’s measures to respond to it have significant constitutional implications, as well as health, social and economic ones. These include:

  • The ability of Parliament to hold the Government to account 
  • Scrutiny of emergency powers
  • The operation of the courts 

The Constitution Committee is considering these issues and exploring questions such as:

  • What can Parliament do to maximise its scrutiny of the emergency regulations and to hold the Government to account effectively during lockdown? How are adjustments to procedures and processes working in the House of Lords?
  • What emergency powers has the Government sought during the pandemic and what powers has it used and how? What lessons are there for future uses of emergency powers, their safeguards and the processes for scrutinising them?
  • How is the court system operating during the pandemic? What has been the impact of virtual proceedings on access to justice, participation in proceedings, transparency and media reporting?

The Committee has concluded taking evidence for this inquiry and will issue reports in due course.

Reports, special reports and government responses

View all reports and responses
3rd Report - COVID-19 and the use and scrutiny of emergency powers
Inquiry Constitutional implications of COVID‑19
Committees Constitution Committee
HL Paper 15
Report
Response to this report
Government response to the Committee's report on COVID-19 and the use and scrutiny of emergency powers
Government Response
22nd Report - COVID-19 and the Courts
Inquiry Constitutional implications of COVID‑19
Committees Constitution Committee
HL Paper 257
Report
Response to this report
Government response to the Committee's report "COVID-19 and the Courts"
HL 257
Government Response
1st Report - COVID-19 and Parliament
Inquiry Constitutional implications of COVID‑19
Committees Constitution Committee
HL Paper 4
Report

Oral evidence transcripts

View all oral evidence transcripts
13 January 2021
Inquiry Constitutional implications of COVID‑19
Witnesses Lord True, and Lord Bethell
Committees Constitution Committee
Oral Evidence
16 December 2020
Inquiry Constitutional implications of COVID‑19
Witnesses Professor Aileen McHarg (Professor of Public Law and Human Rights at Durham University), Professor Daniel Wincott (Blackwell Professor of Law and Society at Cardiff University School of Law and Politics), and Akash Paun (Devolution Lead at Institute for Government)
Committees Constitution Committee
Oral Evidence
9 December 2020
Inquiry Constitutional implications of COVID‑19
Witnesses John Apter (National Chair at Police Federation), and Paddy Tipping (Chair at Association of Police and Crime Commissioners)
Committees Constitution Committee
Oral Evidence
CIC0486 - Constitutional implications of COVID‑19
Witnesses National Police Chiefs Council
Committees Constitution Committee
Written Evidence
CIC0484 - Constitutional implications of COVID‑19
Witnesses Waheed Saleem (Deputy at West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner)
Committees Constitution Committee
Written Evidence
CIC0485 - Constitutional implications of COVID‑19
Witnesses Howard League for Penal Reform
Committees Constitution Committee
Written Evidence

Contact us

  • Email: constitution@parliament.uk
  • Phone: 020 7219 8042 (committee staff) | 020 7219 5986 (Press Officer)
  • Address: Constitution Committee, House of Lords, London SW1A 0PW