As this motion is using historical data, we may not have the record of the original ordering, in which case signatories are listed alphabetically.
That this House recognises the need to reform legal aid to ensure good quality legal services, value for money and access to justice; notes that approximately 50 per cent. of the Criminal Legal Aid Budget is spent on one per cent. of cases; acknowledges the Report of the Bar Working Group into Long and Complex Cases which criticised unrealistic over-charging of defendants by prosecutors, over-loading of indictments, mismanagement of disclosure and poor case management and concludes that all savings needed in the Legal Aid Budget could be made from within the one per cent. of cases; further notes that research underpinning the Carter Review showed that small solicitors' firms provide the lowest costs and the high standard client service and are well regarded by clients; is concerned that Government has failed to act on this; believes that if Government did choose to act on this evidence, much could be done to prevent hundreds of small high street solicitors from being forced out of business by the Government's proposals; believes that large scale closure of small high street solicitors would erode communities and leave vulnerable people without effective access to justice; welcomes the stand taken by charities and representative bodies in pointing out the potential risks to high street solicitors and vulnerable people; and calls on the Government to reconsider its proposals so as to deliver an efficient system for long and complex cases, recognition of the economic and social case for small high street solicitors and the need to provide fair access to justice.