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Nurturing the next generation of socially-conscious lawyers

Some legal aid battles have been lost but the war for access to justice is not over, says Liverpool solicitor Chris Topping

3 December 2013

Reading the legal press over recent weeks you might be excused for believing that the Law Society had completely abandoned legal aid lawyers. Had you been present at the Liverpool Law Society dinner on 10 November you would have been left in no doubt that legal aid is still on our agenda here in Liverpool.

Alistair Fletcher, president of the Liverpool Law Society and a partner at Brabners, used his speech to remind all present that the local law society firmly believes that everyone should have access to justice regardless of means. Alistair reminded his audience, including the guest of honour, Lord Heseltine, that "any erosion of that access is a betrayal of the most vulnerable in our society and therefore the values that define who we are".

Liverpool is exceptionally vulnerable to the triple threat of cuts to public services, cuts to welfare benefits and cuts to advice for those who need those services. In response to this need, at the end of 2011, the the...

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