Legal aid changes hit vulnerable
In my latest column in the Leicester Mercury, I discuss the Government’s Legal Aid Bill.
Many constituents who contact me need help with issues such as family breakdown, domestic violence, debt and benefits advice, writes Leicester MP Liz Kendall. I often refer them to Leicester’s Community Legal Advice Centre, Citizens Advice Bureau or other charities for specialist advice.
This vital help is now under threat because of the Government’s Legal Aid Bill.
The Conservatives and Liberal Democrats say that in these difficult economic times cuts must be made to our legal aid system.
I agree. However, instead of focusing on effectively reducing criminal legal aid – the main reason why legal aid costs in Britain are higher than in other countries – the Government is instead targeting civil law cases.
It wants to remove legal aid for many cases of divorce and family law, to restrict it for domestic violence and clinical negligence and to abolish it for welfare and benefit cases.
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