Organ Donation in Wales

Wales has introduced a new law meaning that people will now have to opt out of being an organ donor rather than opting in – this is called presumed consent. This means unless you tell us otherwise, we will presume that you do not mind being an organ donor.

This is a great example for a range of topics. It could be used for Democracy in Unit 1 to show how differing regions in the UK have power to rule over their local area. The growth in devolution has been a marked feature of the UK since 1997, and with George Osbourne promising more devolution to local councils this is a good example of what they can achieve.

It could also be used to question the sovereignty of Parliament. This law is possible thanks to the 2011 referendum in which Wales gained primary legislative powers; that is the right to pass legislation in Wales (on devolved issues) without approval from Westminster. If Wales can do this, it could perhaps suggest that, in reality, Parliament has lost some of it’s sovereignty. This could come up as part of the Parliament or Constitution topic in Unit 2, or indeed as an example of the impact of a referendum in Unit 1.