MP backs bid for free legal advice

MAKERFIELD’S MP has helped launch a new campaign which aims to ensure continuing free legal advice for everyone.

Yvonne Fovergue is part of a coalition of groups opposed to proposed cuts to free legal advice which converged on Westminster for the official launch of the Justice for All campaign. More than 1,000 agencies, including Citizens Advice and the Law Centres Federation, charities, politicians, trade unions, community groups and members of the public have already signed up to the campaign.

Half a million fewer people will be helped through legal aid funded advice on social welfare law and family problems, according to Ministry of Justice figures, as part of a package to reduce the legal aid budget by £350m.

Advice funded by legal aid will be cut entirely to welfare benefits and education law.

Ms Fovargue MP said: “Access to justice is one of the cornerstones of a free and civilised society. It is vital that everyone – particularly the most vulnerable - is treated fairly under the law, no matter who they are, how much money they have or where they live.“

Part of an Early Day Motion tabled by Ms Fovargue reads: “This House welcomes the Justice for All campaign, supports the aims of the campaign to raise awareness of the vital importance of advice and representation on legal matters for the most vulnerable in our society and to ensure that everyone is treated fairly under the law, no matter who they are, how much money they have or where they live.”