Concern over Legal Aid
CILEx President expresses concern over further changes to Legal Aid
09 April 2013
Nick Hanning, President of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx), has today expressed concern over the Government’s latest proposals to make further cuts to Legal Aid.
Speaking of the mooted plans, he said: “The proposals announced today appear designed to be divisive within society. We expect the Ministry of Justice to focus on improving access to justice for all, not on identifying groups of people who can be ostracised from justice. We will hold firm to this principle as we carefully consider the proposals over this shortened consultation period.
“We are particularly concerned over removing civil legal aid to recent immigrants, removing support to judicial review applicants challenging public bodies, and to continuing to punish people after they have served their time by making them pay for the court costs from future earnings, in effect inhibiting their ability to rebuild their lives and contribute to society.
“Additionally, many reports from HM Inspectorate of Prisons have been critical of the conditions of prisons in the UK, which makes the proposal to remove support for prisoners challenging their treatment, or limiting the support for those challenging their sentencing conditions, hard to support”
CILEx CEO, Diane Burleigh OBE, added: “I am greatly concerned over the lack of weight the Government has given to the considered views of practitioners and experts in recent consultations, instead charging ahead in the absence of robust evidence. CILEx will be preparing a response to the consultation in the coming weeks, and I hope the Government will take this opportunity to reverse this practice.”
More proposed changes to Legal Aid – CILEx members’ have your say by responding to the consultation.