Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)
Watchdog confirms Grenfell breached human rights laws
Local authorities and public services failed their human rights obligations to protect life and provide safe housing, we have confirmed in a report submitted to the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.
The Following Grenfell report states residents’ right to life and right to adequate housing were breached before the fire started on 14 June 2017.
It highlights authorities were presented with evidence the cladding was unsafe but failed to take action to prevent the loss of 72 lives.
Not banning the cladding at the time, or strengthening rules for its use in the UK, breached residents’ right to life under Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights. This is a fault the Equality and Human Rights Commission says "lies with the authorities".
More than 300 high-rise buildings in the UK continue to be wrapped in the now banned combustible cladding, suggesting the failure to protect lives and violation of Article 2 continues.
The safety of wheelchair users, elderly and disabled people were further overlooked when vulnerable residents were housed on the top floors of the high-rise building.
We have said this was a breach of their right to adequate housing, which is internationally recognised by the UN in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
Evidence has emerged that the safety notice was only given to residents in English, a language not spoken by many Grenfell residents. ‘Following Grenfell’ concludes this was a fundamental failure by the authorities to meet victims’ needs and protect their right to life.
Residents’ concerns about their ability to fully participate in the official inquiry have been raised during the length of the project.
It is vital that those affected by the fire have the opportunity to present their views; issues raised include concerns about the accessibility of the original venue, and the ability to put questions to witnesses. The Grenfell Inquiry is urged to take note and respond to these concerns as it starts the next phase.
Latest News from
Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)
Manders win race adoption case06/12/2019 16:05:00
Berkshire based adoption agency found to have discriminated against a British born couple of Sikh Indian heritage.
Universities oblivious to scale of racial abuse on campus23/10/2019 13:25:00
Our inquiry report Tackling racial harassment: universities challenged has revealed that with racial harassment occurring at an alarmingly high rate across British universities, many Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) are not only unaware of the scale of the issue but are overconfident in their ability to handle it.
Calling time on NDAs in discrimination cases17/10/2019 15:10:00
Two years after the #MeToo campaign, the Equality and Human Rights Commission has launched new guidance for employers on the use of confidentiality agreements (often referred to as NDAs) in discrimination cases.
Queen's speech 2019: a time of great uncertainty and change15/10/2019 11:33:00
Equality and Human Rights Commission Chief Executive, Rebecca Hilsenrath yesterday responded to the commitments outlined in the Queen's Speech.
First ever UK human rights tracker launched10/10/2019 09:25:00
A tool to make the UK’s human rights records transparent, and the Government accountable, launched yesterday.
Speech: John Cass lecture 201926/09/2019 16:33:00
Speech delivered by David Isaac on 25 September 2019: Moving beyond the "I" to the "We": how the education system can help heal a divided society.
Watchdog warning to transport operators26/09/2019 14:37:00
Our new project will support individuals who have experienced discrimination while using, or attempting to use, public transport.
Disabled, elderly and ill Gypsies and Travellers forgotten in site provision13/09/2019 14:20:00
Gypsies and Travellers who have stopped travelling due to old age, ill-health, educational needs or being disabled are being forgotten in planning authorities’ site allocation processes following changes to policy definitions.
School forced to reinstate and apologise for discrimination of disabled pupil05/09/2019 12:10:00
The parents of a pupil living with ADHD and sensory processing difficulties have successfully won a case against their child’s independent prep school, Ashdown House, for an unlawful discriminatory exclusion.