The super-injunction – a remedy for the super rich and a symbol of the growing inequality in our society says Lord Walker.
What made Zenith Chambers’ annual Munkman lecture so surprising this year, wasn’t just the lecture title, ‘Sex, Leaks and Super Injunctions’ , but the fact that for the speaker – Lord Robert Walker – this was his first visit to Leeds!
Andrew Argyle, Chief Executive of Zenith Chambers admitted that “There was a slight gasp by the very Yorkshire audience when this fact was revealed, but he was quickly forgiven!” Lord Walker of Gestingthorpe, who is a Judge of the Supreme Court, went on to deliver a very informative lecture which was very much his own personal reflections on a topic which he regards as “both very important and difficult”.
The right to respect for personal privacy and the right to freedom of expression are very important principles even in the banal context of the kiss and tell stories about “celebrities who are famous for at least 5 minutes.”
Lord Walker reminded the audience of around 100 delegates at BPP Law School of just how quickly the law on the invasion of personal privacy has developed in recent years. In his view, the court should not act as “censor of taste” and judges were more frequently being asked to achieve the correct balance between freedom of speech and the individual’s right to respect for his private life - even if their private life involved conduct such as adultery, which many people regard as deplorable.
After guiding the audience through the decisions of a number of high profile cases on the topic, he concluded, “There is less equality in our society now than 10 or 20 years ago. The super- injunction, a remedy available only to the super rich, may be seen as a small symbol of this growing inequality.”
Please click here for the full lecture notes.