Author Archives: Neil van Dokkum

About Neil van Dokkum

Neil van Dokkum (B. SocSc; LLB; LLM; PGC Con.Lit) Neil is a law lecturer and has been so since arriving in Ireland from South Africa in 2002. Prior to that Neil worked in a leading firm of solicitors from 1987-1992, before being admitted as an Advocate of the Supreme Court of South Africa (a barrister) in 1992. He published three books in South Africa on employment law and unfair dismissal, as well as being published in numerous national and international peer-reviewed journals. Neil currently specialises in employment law, medical negligence law, family law and child protection law. He dabbles in EU law (procurement and energy). Neil retired from full-time practice in 2002 to take up a lecturing post. He has published three books since then, “Nursing Law for Irish Students (2005); “Evidence” (2007); and “Nursing Law for Students in Ireland” (2011). His current interest is the area of disability as a politico-economic construct. Neil is very happily married to Fiona, and they have two sons, Rory and Ian.

What is “disability”?

  We are always taught to define key concepts at the beginning of any investigation, so let’s try and do that. What is meant by the term ‘disability’? Disability was defined by the World Health Organisation (WHO) in 2008 as: … Continue reading

Posted in Autism, Autistic Spectrum Disorder, ASD, Special Needs; Intellectual Disability; Marriage | Tagged | 1 Comment

People with intellectual disabilities who want to marry.

In the matter of A A man with an intellectual disability who wants to marry his long term partner has won his appeal to halt an inquiry into whether he should be made a Ward of Court. In June 2019, … Continue reading

Posted in Special Needs; Intellectual Disability; Marriage | Tagged | Leave a comment

When you need a helping hand

For parents whose child has been (recently) diagnosed with autism, my wife Fiona has graciously made her book available on line for free. Please spread the word. https://online.flippingbook.com/view/601632/

Posted in Autism, Autistic Spectrum Disorder, ASD | Tagged | 1 Comment

Learning at Level 5

This blog has been quiet for a while as I am currently engaged with lecturing online, which is a time-consuming and often stressful exercise, as there are so many elements completely beyond your control. I know that from a student … Continue reading

Posted in Academic Research; Peer-Review Process; Medical Journals, Apple; Google; Data Centre, High Court; Judge Caroline Costello; John Callaghan; Leave to Appeal, Justine McCarthy; The Sunday Times; EMF, Law; High Court; Leave To Appeal; Environment, learning; education; COVID; student; pupil; Leaving Cert; IT; university; lecture; lesson; teaching; lecturing; learner; learning; school; college; grinds; jobseeker; online education; help, Legal Costs; Access to Justice; Courts, Rugby Union; ; Super Sub; CJ Stander; IRFU; Munster Rugby;, University Hospital Waterford, Wind Turbine Syndrome; Professor Alun Evans | Leave a comment

The concept of Standing and the access to justice

The Roman forum was a busy, often chaotic, place. Merchants, moneylenders, prophets, politicians, herbalists, apothecaries, and so on, were all jostling around doing business. It was similar to our modern-day marketplace, but probably a lot rowdier. What set the Roman … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Justice; Locus Standi; Standing; Legal Standing, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters; Aarhus Convention; Aarhus Treaty | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Public Consultation – fruitful or farcical?

What makes a good public consultation? I often write about a flawed or absent public consultation process. People keep saying to me: “We know how you are not supposed to do it, but can you not be constructive and suggest … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy; Ireland; Fine Gael; Labour; Sinn Fein; Workers; Constitution, lobbying; democracy; political process; general election, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters; Aarhus Convention; Aarhus Treaty | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Victims Vindicated: Farmers Victorious in Landmark Legal Battle Over Wind Turbine Noise

Will Irish judges follow the lead taken by their Australian counterparts? Victims Vindicated: Farmers Victorious in Landmark Legal Battle Over Wind Turbine Noise August 25, 2020 by stopthesethingsLeave a Comment Victors … Victims Vindicated: Farmers Victorious in Landmark Legal Battle … Continue reading

Posted in EirGrid; Insurance; Law; Cancer; EMF | 1 Comment

More on Forestry

Those readers who were I interested in my previous blog on the forestry industry in Ireland will be interested to read an interview that Peter Sweetman gave to the Irish Independent. I have selected some highlights from the interview: Peter … Continue reading

Posted in EirGrid; Insurance; Law; Cancer; EMF | Leave a comment

Seeing the Wood and the trees.

 My most favourite place is in a forest. They are full of energy, they smell lovely, they shield you from outside noise, there is birdsong and the occasional chatter of squirrels, you might see deer or other forest creatures, and … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy; Ireland; Fine Gael; Labour; Sinn Fein; Workers; Constitution, EIA Directive 2014/52/EU, Legal Costs; Access to Justice; Courts, lobbying; democracy; political process; general election, Planning and Development Act 2000; guidelines; directives; Sections 28 & 29, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters; Aarhus Convention; Aarhus Treaty | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

“obscurum per obscurius”

(“the obscure by the more obscure”)   If “bullshit” was a proper legal concept, it would have been used liberally in the latest Supreme Court judgment, and one can only imagine that the actual word was used in discussions between … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy; Ireland; Fine Gael; Labour; Sinn Fein; Workers; Constitution, EIA Directive 2014/52/EU, EU Renewable Energy 2020 Target, Green Party; Ireland; Eamonn Ryan; Cormac Manning, lobbying; democracy; political process; general election, NREAP; National Renewable Energy Action Plan; EU Commission; Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee; ACCC, Planning and Development Act 2000; guidelines; directives; Sections 28 & 29, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters; Aarhus Convention; Aarhus Treaty | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Forcing the ‘Custodians of the Planning Process’ to do their job.

Many readers will be surprised to know that Irish planning law does have enforcement procedures. They will be even more surprised to know that the bodies designated to perform this enforcement function are the Councils. This is due to the … Continue reading

Posted in An Bord Pleanala; appeal; interested parties, lobbying; democracy; political process; general election, Planning and Development Act 2000; guidelines; directives; Sections 28 & 29, Planning Permission; Extension; Planning and Development Act | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Injunctions against Quarries

Illegal quarries seem to be in the news a lot lately, and it is always useful to pursue these stories, as their level of proliferation is usually directly proportional to the level of corruption in our county council system.  The reason … Continue reading

Posted in EirGrid; Insurance; Law; Cancer; EMF | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Path to Extinction: Giant Wind & Solar Farms Destroying Habitat & Threatening Endangered Species

Originally posted on STOP THESE THINGS: Mike Moore’s Planet of The Humans revealed the wholesale environmental destruction caused by wind and solar; … Path to Extinction: Giant Wind & Solar Farms Destroying Habitat & Threatening Endangered Species

Posted in EirGrid; Insurance; Law; Cancer; EMF | Leave a comment

Michael Shellenberger: Sorry, But I Cried Wolf on Climate Change

Originally posted on STOP THESE THINGS: If climate change is a problem, then wind turbines and solar panels aren’t a solution: heavily subsidised and… Michael Shellenberger: Sorry, But I Cried Wolf on Climate Change

Posted in EirGrid; Insurance; Law; Cancer; EMF | Leave a comment

Adios to Substituted Consent. At last.

Peter Sweetman What is substituted consent? Substituted consent is a form of retention permission, whereby a person can obtain planning permission for a building or development  after that building has already been erected. It has a long and colourful history … Continue reading

Posted in An Bord Pleanala; appeal; interested parties, EIA Directive 2014/52/EU, Freedom of Information; Access to Environmental Information; AIE; Commissioner for Environmental Information, Green Party; Ireland; Eamonn Ryan; Cormac Manning, judicial review; Wednesbury Test; O'Keeffe; rationality; Separation of Powers, Kilvinane Wind Farm Ltd; substituted consent, NREAP; National Renewable Energy Action Plan; EU Commission; Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee; ACCC, Peremptory law; Directory Law; Planning and Devlopment Act of 2000, Planning and Development Act 2000; guidelines; directives; Sections 28 & 29, Planning Permission; Extension; Planning and Development Act, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters; Aarhus Convention; Aarhus Treaty, Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA); Grid 25; North-South Interconnector | Tagged , , | 7 Comments

Distraction from the car engine

A very insightful piece from an amazing young woman. via Distraction from the car engine

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What do we mean by “Conflict of Interest”?

EU commissioner lobbied by energy firm he owns shares in Johannes Hahn is the European Commissioner for budget and administration. He also owns 2,200 shares in Austria’s largest electricity-provider (Photo: europarl.europa.eu) By NIKOLAJ NIELSEN   BRUSSELS, 14. FEB, 07:04   … Continue reading

Posted in EU Renewable Energy 2020 Target, lobbying; democracy; political process; general election | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Oh, what a lovely scam!

  This is a very interesting piece from National Wind Watch which in turn was gleaned from an article in the Sunday Times. Considering the number of new applications for wind farms happening all over the country, I wonder how … Continue reading

Posted in EU Renewable Energy 2020 Target, Planning Permission; Extension; Planning and Development Act, Wind Farm Guidelines, turbines, flicker, noise, distance, Denis Naughten | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments