To ask Her Majesty's Government further to the Written Answer by Baroness Royall of Blaisdon on 9 November (WA 118), whether, under Section 69 of the Northern Ireland Act 1998, the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission's remit includes securing legislative implementation of its advice on a bill of rights for Northern Ireland; whether it is permitted to expend its own funds and staff time doing so; and whether that is consistent with its other statutory functions. [HL103]
Under Section 69 of the Northern Ireland Act 1998, the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission (NIHRC) has a wide-ranging remit, which includes keeping under review the effectiveness and adequacy of law and practice relating to the protection of human rights, as well as promoting the understanding and awareness of human rights in Northern Ireland. The NIHRC is independent of government and it is entitled to set its own programme of work, consistent with its statutory functions. Its business plan for the current financial year is available on its website: http://www.nihrc.org/index.php?page= subresources&category_id=27&from=0&resources_id= 57&Itemid=6l.
The Government have no reason to believe that this plan is inconsistent with the NIHRC's statutory functions.