The Charity Rights of Women has launched a Judicial Review over how the government’s reforms to legal aid have restricted access to legal advice and representation for those affected by domestic violence.
Emma Scott, Director of the charity gives a very clear account of their legal challenge and the impact of government reforms in a recent interview on BBC Radio 4 Woman’s Hour – Please click here to listen (16:19 mins in).
Rights of Women has published research which reveals how access to safety and justice is being denied to the women the Government sought to protect when family law was removed from the scope of legal aid.
Faced with having to represent themselves in court against the perpetrators of domestic violence inflicted on them, the research found that 60% of women did not pursue the cases to court, and hence are placed more at risk of violence.
On top of this, in the interview Emma Scott explains how the government has ‘set very high evidence criteria…[for accessing legal aid]…evidence that women simply don’t have because domestic violence is hidden in nature’. As a result of all these changes ‘Women are feeling incredibly unsafe’.
Please sign our petition to stop the government gambling with our justice system.
To read the recent report by Rights of Women, please click here.