The government has announced that it is to restrict the availability of legal aid for certain kinds of case.
This not only represents the latest attack on the poor by a Government of millionaires but also prejudices the Article 6 rights of those of limited means to achieve a fair hearing.
Campaign now to oppose the cuts in Legal Aid
Jack Nilsen commented
Access to legal help is a citizen's right - it should be restricted by the ability to pay!
Jack Nilsen commented
Access to legal help is a right of every citizen, it should not be restricted by the ability to pay!
This legislation represents a further attack on and erosion of Legal Aid which will deprive ordinary citizens of the right to secure access to the means to achieve justice.
BUSY BEE commented
Politicians rarely (if ever) read the comments on this site. If you really want to have an affect submit written evidence to the Public Bill Committee. More information on how to do this can be found at: http://www.parliament.uk/business/news/2011/june/second-reading-of-legal-aid-sentencing-and-punishment-of-offenders-bill/
Ian Thrilling commented
As a solicitor working for vulnerable people, I strongly believe the planned cuts to legal aid undermine the principle of fair and equal access to justice for all. What should be cut is the unnecessary complexity of the vast majority of our legislation.
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Liam Kreibich commented
I can't say more than Margret and Osarumen, who are colleagues of mine, said below. Short term gain, long term costs - financially and socially. Do not cut legal aid.
Margret Christie commented
The government's assumption that CABs and other voluntary organisations will be able to provide adequate advice and assistance using volunteers who can only expect to be minimally trained, and may each be available for one day or less per week is deluded. The effect of removing legal aid funding will be to remove the rights of vulnerable people to legal advice and support at times when they are in fact most vulnerable. The result will be horrifying, and the current undercurrents in the market suggesting a rapid rise in repossessions and homelessness will come to reality far more quickly than any of us wish to consider.
The short term gain will be followed by long term costs which will far outstrip the funds saved
THAT is why legal aid funding was put in place in the first place.
osarumen ugiagbe commented
How on earth can you jusitfy cutting a service which helps the most vulnerable people in society. There is clearly a lot of anger at the way sections of society are being treated. The government have no concept of what life is like for these people and the impact cutting this service will have
Lynn Evans commented
Cutting legal aid will deny the most vulnerable people living in local communities access to their rights and justice. Local law centres and CABs will be forced to close - these invaluable resources are likely to be lost for ever.
alice twaite commented
The serious problems for some of the most deprived people in our society will cause serious problems for the rest of our society as recent event so clearly show. We are interconnected.
Bob Chapman commented
Legal Aid is a much under-rated cornerstone of the welfare state - the current proposals to cut expenditure will cause serious problems for some of the most deprived people in our society.
Many people have difficult legal issues to be sorted out FAIRLY, but some of them cannot afford legal assistance on their own expenses. If such important achievement of British Society as Legal Aid will be not be available any more for poorer people, than FAIRNESS, as one of most important values of British Society will not exist anymore too. We shouldn't let it happened. Please, do your bits in order to stop it-! Best Regards to ALL, Alex.
geoff hill commented
I'm not a lawyer, but work with many individuals and groups who need, but cannot afford legal aid. There is no justice without a fair legal aid system
ken and jean palmer commented
legal aid should be there for all those that need it. it helped us when we needed it
James Stewart commented
The most concerning part of the cuts is removing welfare benefits from scope. This leaves the path clear for the unreasonably harsh restrictions on sickness and disability benefits which have been suggested by the government. Similarly, the removal of employment will pave the way for regressive changes in employment law.
M Hull commented
It should not just be the preserve of the better off or rich who have access to fair representation in the law.
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David Gilmore commented
In the absence of a cost/benefit analysis to government and society, the planned reforms cannot be supported by any objective individual or organisation.
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ray avards commented
Vital Legal Aid casework is carried out up and down the country for disadvantaged people and access to specialist help to put a fair and just case and argument is a fundamantal civil right. Please amend this bill to maintain access to justice.