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Feeling the draft

The Equality Bill currently trundling through the House of Lords is very specific. After Clause 45(1) has defined harassment on religious grounds as person A either violating person B's dignity or "creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for B", the next bit then states:

(3) Action by A shall be regarded as having the effect described in subsection (1)(a) or (b) only if it should reasonably be regarded as having that effect having regard to—

(a) B's perception, and
(b) all the other circumstances.

Excellent. I only like two kinds of cheese:

(a) Gouda, and
(b) all the other kinds of cheese.


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 9th, 2005 07:56 pm (UTC)
Well said.
(Deleted comment)
Nov. 9th, 2005 09:33 pm (UTC)
I know what you mean, but I can't help that's precluded by the word "and". If the subsections were meant to connect (a) to (a), (b) to (b), surely the phrase would have to be "B's perception, or"?

Unless and until a better explanation comes along, my cheese analogy stands.
Nov. 9th, 2005 11:45 pm (UTC)
It could, of course, be a useful safety valve. For instance: my dignity was really violated (a) because that's how it seemed to me, but (b) we all had a jolly good laugh about it later. So let's just forget about it.
Nov. 10th, 2005 01:55 am (UTC)
I'm really not very good at this sort of thing, but isn't it implying that A is caught by the legislation if, and only if, it can reasonably be regarded that he has violated person B's dignity with regard to both a) and b). In other words, B's perception alone won't do it and "all the other circumstances" alone won't do it either. I am a little baffled as to what these circumstances could be, but could it just be a catch-all for stuff other people might report, outside of B's perception, to imply that A has committed an offence?

In summary. only if evidence of both a) and b) is found to be present can A be convicted of the offence. Can this be right?
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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