Response - Law Society Access to Justice Review

By: Simon Pugh  Published: July 2010


As a national provider of social welfare law, we are only too aware of the issues in legal aid at present. The announcement of the Ministry of Justice’s 'fundamental look' at legal aid, following on from the Magee Review, makes this a timely contribution to the debate over the future of access to justice and publicly funded legal services.

Summary

Shelter believes that everyone has the right to a home. That is at the core of our vision, and informs all the work we do both in service provision and campaigning. There are two aspects of this; the right to access housing of suitable quality, and the right to keep it. Good and timely advice is crucial to this. It can make the difference between having a roof over your head and being on the streets. Shelter has countless examples where the intervention of good quality advice and representation has made the difference.

It is therefore of vital importance to us and our work that there is proper access to justice. Shelter believes that an important part of ensuring access to justice is the provision of a properly funded legal aid system. In a system such as that in England and Wales, access to funding very often determines whether there is access to justice.

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