On 23rd April we arranged a free one day workshop on working with distressed Litigants in Person. Over 90 people registered to attend but unfortunately others were unable to join us as the event was oversubscribed. Given the high level of interest, we have provided an update on the workshop below together with next steps to ensure everyone in the LIP Network is informed about our work.
Gateshead Enterprises - the Community Interest Company funding and supporting Citizens Advice Gateshead
(Author: Vikkie Wilkinson, Development Manager at Gateshead Enterprises) In 2012 the Trustee Board of Citizens Advice Gateshead were facing some huge challenges – as one of the biggest Community Law Advice Centres in England the reform of Legal Aid meant the loss of 60 staff and some £3 million income for the organisation alongside the huge impact to the local community.
Ellen Taylor, from Derbyshire Law Centre, explains their plans to use funding, provided by the Ministry of Justice through the Litigant in Person Support Strategy, to develop their Lip Service.
Milk, Bread & Legal Advice? A fortnightly surgery in Tescos allows visitors to add free legal advice to their shopping list.
Although the much-hyped concept of ‘Tesco Law’ failed to gain much steam, Camilla Choudhury-Khawaja, director of legal consultancy The Women’s Lawyer, has created a different version of supermarket law by offering free legal advice in Tesco Extra, Watford.
Trustee Lisa Hilder talks about Affordable Justice, a women’s social enterprise in Hull whose ground-breaking legal service supports women to escape from violent and abusive relationships and allow them to rebuild their lives. Developed as a response to the decrease in availability of Legal Aid over the past few years, the not-for-profit service offers a full range of family law legal services and representation.
Dr Jane Krishnadas explains the foundations of CLOCK, The Community Legal Outreach Collaboration, Keele. CLOCK was formed as an umbrella of professional public, private and third sector organisations, to develop a new role ‘the Community Legal Companion’, premised upon the McKenzie Friend principles, to safeguard the litigant- in-person’s rights to assistance and access to legally-aided and affordable legal services, within the shared commitment to access to justice.
The LawWorks Clinics Programme provides support and assistance to free legal advice clinics, supported by volunteer lawyers. They are looking to looking to hear from people in the South East of England who are currently running a pro bono clinic or interested in developing a new clinic.
The Welsh Government has just published an Information and Advice Plan, working together with the National Advice Network and others. It sets out how they aspire to work together to improve access to the quality assured services which people need. Published December 2016.