Guardian of legal aid

For once I can begin a report about the Legal Aid Board (The Lawyer, 30 August 1994) and be pleased by the end of it.

I refer, of course, to the plans to tighten up on those richer members of society who have been able to secure legal aid in recent high profile cases.

As a legal aid practitioner (and proud of it) I have grown tired of the constant attacks from various sectors (the LCD, the Tory press, and so on) on the legal rights of those too poor and vulnerable to defend themselves. It grates to read of the wealthy receiving legal aid while I am forced daily to turn clients away (or do the work for nothing) as a direct result of the recent legal aid eligibility cuts.

May this mark the beginning of a series of proposals to take from the rich rather than the poor. I see our role as guardians of the public's legal rights as our raison d'atre and believe we must fight to maintain it.

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