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Judicial Review Permission Success for Trinity Human Rights Barrister


Alice Richardson

The High Court has granted permission to proceed by way of Judicial Review in a complex disability discrimination case after a contested oral permission hearing.

In R (Fisher) v Durham County Council CO/841/2019, Trinity Housing and Public Law barrister Alice Richardson was instructed as Junior Counsel for Ms Fisher.

Ms Fisher suffers from a medical condition which results in her involuntarily vocalising sounds, words or phrases (which are often profane).

In November 2018, the Council served a noise abatement notice on Ms Fisher, pursuant s.80 Environmental Protection Act 1990, requiring her to stop making those noises and giving her 1 hour to comply.

Ms Fisher issued Judicial Review proceedings, she contends that the service of the notice amounted to unlawful discrimination contrary to sections 15 and 29 Equality Act 2010. She also argues that the notice was served in breach of section 149 of the Equality Act 2010 and Articles 8 and 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

At an oral hearing on 15th October 2019 Mrs Justice Jefford granted permission to proceed by way of Judicial Review on all grounds. Whilst there is a route of appeal to the Magistrates Court and the possibility of bringing a claim in the County Court it was strongly arguable that neither of those Courts could provide an effective remedy and, in any event, that question was one of wider public importance which justified a full hearing.

Alice is instructed by Graham Tyler of Newtons Solicitors. The case was funded, in part, by the Equality and Human Rights Commission. Alice was led at the hearing by Justin Bates of Landmark Chambers in London.

Alice is a member of the Equality and Human Rights Commission Panel of Counsel and is regularly instructed in a wide range of public law matters concerning human rights and the Equality Act .

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