Next APG meeting – 16.10.2014

The All Party Group (APG) on legal aid is delighted to announce its next breakfast meeting on access to justice for children and young people. The meeting will be held in the Jubilee Room in Parliament on Thursday 16 October 2014 from 8.30 to 10.00am.

Cuts to legal aid in recent years have been made across the board with no exceptions for young people. Further changes to legal rules for judicial review also make no exceptions.  Yet the evidence is mounting that young people are particularly affected by restrictions to access to justice. Recent research commissioned by the Children’s Commissioner shows that young people are often not aware of their rights and then often face hurdles in accessing it even when legal aid is available, let alone where it has been removed or reduced.

This session will present evidence of the impact of cut backs so far and brief members on aspects of the Criminal Justice and Courts Bill, currently about to reach report stage, that will have a further adverse effect on young people.

Speakers confirmed so far include:

Representatives from the Office of the Children’s Commissioner, JustRights, Just for Kids Law, The Howard League for Penal Reform, Coram Children’s Legal Centre, Children’s Rights Alliance England and Youth Access

If you know a Parliamentarian that may be interested in this issue, please alert them to the meeting.

You can email your MP to ask them to attend via this website – enter your postcode and it will give you their details:

Colleagues are also welcome to attend but please be sure to RSVP to Carol Storer and Eleanor Sanders at quoting ‘APG’ in the suject line of the email.

Research by Just for Kids Law commissioned by the Children’s Commissioner is available here

The Guardian has reported the research here

A briefing by Just Rights on the impact of interventions in judicial review cases on young people is available here