Yesterday Liberal Democrat Spring Conference voted for the restoration of Legal Aid and a new legal right to access to justice for everyone.
In a motion on Sunday morning, Conference asserted that access to justice is a crucial right and that cuts to Legal Aid have undermined it.
Liberal Democrats voted for the restoration of Legal Aid for early legal advice, assistance and representation in benefit, debt, employment, immigration, housing and family law cases.
Conference also voted to establish a new right to affordable, reasonable legal assistance with a new, independent Justice Commission to monitor and enforce it.
Liberal Democrat Justice spokesperson Wera Hobhouse, who summated the motion, commented:
“Access to justice is a critical right. Without it, people can be wrongfully evicted, deported, denied benefits or deprived custody of their children – with no real chance to fight for their rights in court.
“The Conservative Government’s cuts to Legal Aid have gone far beyond what was envisaged in 2012, leaving far too many people – especially vulnerable people – without legal advice or representation. That in turn contributes to poverty and social exclusion.
“The Liberal Democrats demand better. The motion we have passed today would ensure access to justice through a properly-funded, simpler Legal Aid system. That is a fundamental part of building the fairer society we all want to live in."