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Lord Bach on the three key reasons why we all should fight together for legal aid
On 14th June 2011, the report of an independent commission into the Conservative-LibDem Government’s proposals to reform legal aid was launched at the House of Lords: Unequal Before The Law: the future of legal aid
This is one of a few video snippets of that launch. Details on how to download the report and contribute to saving the fourth pillar of the Welfare State are at the end of this piece
From the report:
What would happen if three disinterested people looked into the question of why we have legal aid and what would be the effect of reducing funding?
The Commission of Inquiry comprising Dr Evan Harris, Diana Holland and the Reverend Professor Nicholas Sagovsky have no vested interest in the issue. They have taken a dispassionate look at the facts and reported on their findings. They have considered the value of legal aid both to the individuals receiving assistance and to society as a whole.
The testimony the commission heard from individual clients was very powerful.
But powerful and moving as individual cases are, of even greater importance is the commission’s recognition of how failure to deal with individual cases could impact on society as a whole. Legal aid is a vital part of ensuring that everyone is equal under the law. Government and others including some who are rich and powerful such as landlords, spouses, employers, and pharmaceutical companies, ignore or are ignorant of the protections that should be offered to individuals. Without legal aid these wrongs could not be corrected.
You can download the report for free, here:
You can download a short visual summary of what is going on and why you every citizen should be aware of how the UK Government is removing much of our society’s ability to access to justice in the future, here:
http://downloads.ilegal.org.uk/shush.pdf [750kb PDF file]
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