JusticeWatch: 2019 Justice First Fellowship scheme opens

Posted by - 23rd August 2019

Courts idle as cases stack up Nearly half of all crown courts across England and Wales were left empty on Monday this week, the Guardian’s Owen Bowcott reported, despite lawyers claiming that the backlog of criminal cases had never been so long. ‘Law experts suggested MoJ cuts to the number of sitting days and recorders

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JusticeWatch: Legal Aid Matters

Posted by - 19th July 2019

The shadow justice secretary Richard Burgon MP pledged that a Labour government would restore ‘all of early legal help’ in its first week in government at a Justice Alliance event to celebrate the 70th anniversary of legal aid. Will Bordell reported on the event for the Justice Gap. Richard Burgon described Lord Willy Bach’s report on access

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JusticeWatch: Running up the down escalator

Posted by - 5th July 2019

Running up the down escalator Family courts were having to ‘run up a down escalator’ to keep pace with unprecedented increases in childcare cases, the most senior family judge has said. According to The Guardian, Sir Andrew McFarlane, president of the family division, some parents needed to be persuaded not to bring claims to court

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JusticeWatch: The MoJ’s ‘culture of refusal’

Posted by - 28th June 2019

The MoJ’s ‘culture of refusal’ Lawyers who help people in danger of losing their homes claim they are being forced to take on cases at their own financial risk as the Legal Aid Agency adopts a ‘culture of refusal, reported The Guardian. Applications for legal aid in homelessness cases has ‘tumbled’ despite a steep rise

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JusticeWatch: Growing ‘justice gap’ in discrimination cases

Posted by - 21st June 2019

David vs Goliath Victims of discrimination were being denied access to justice and offenders going unchallenged as a result of a ‘failing’ legal aid system, as reported in the Justice Gap. A new report by the Equality and Human Rights Commission revealed that between 2014 and 2018 no workplace discrimination cases were backed by legal aid

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JusticeWatch: Droughts and deserts

Posted by - 14th June 2019

Droughts and deserts Barrister Jo Wilding published new research on the supply side of the market for immigration and asylum legal aid services. The map above shows large areas (in grey) where there are no providers at all. But even in areas where there is at least one provider, the research reveals that ‘advice droughts’ can

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JusticeWatch: #TakeYourMPtoWork

Posted by - 7th June 2019

#TakeYourMPtoWork The Young Legal Aid Lawyers and the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Legal Aid are running a joint campaign: #TakeYourMPtoWork. They say: ‘We’re organising MPs to visit law centres and legal advice clinics during June to see first-hand why comprehensive early legal advice is so vital. MPs will meet with legal aid lawyers and in many cases shadow

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JusticeWatch: LALYS 2019 shortlist announced

Posted by - 31st May 2019

LASPO cuts ‘exacerbate extreme poverty’ The ‘dramatic rolling back’ of the legal aid scheme has been identified as one of the causes of ‘the systematic immiseration of millions’ across the UK, according to the UN’s expert on poverty and human rights Philip Alston, the UN rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, called the imposition

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JusticeWatch: Selling off the family silver

Posted by - 17th May 2019

Selling off the family silver The Justice Alliance last night called for a moratorium on court closures. Writing for the Law Society’s Gazette, Monidipa Fouzder reported that campaigners ‘congregated opposite the site of the former Bloomsbury County Court last night, holding candles as they watched a slideshow highlighting the fate of some of the 162 magistrates’

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JusticeWatch: New line up at the MoJ

Posted by - 10th May 2019

New line up at the MoJ The prime minister ‘appears to have taken advantage of a comparative lull in politics to shuffle roles at the Ministry of Justice’, reported the Law Society’s Gazette. Robert Buckland QC MP has been appointed as a minister of state with responsibility for prisons, replacing Rory Stewart MP. Buckland is

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