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Greens support review of National's two tier legal system

27 February 2012

Greens support judicial review of National's two tier legal system

The Green Party fully supports the Criminal Bar Association's legal challenge to National's unfair legal aid scheme, Metiria Turei, Green Party Co-leader said today.

"National's policy further widens the gap between rich and poor by creating a two tier system of justice; one for those who can afford to pay and one for those who cannot."

The Criminal Bar Association (CBA) is seeking a judicial review of the Ministry of Justice's decision to establish a fixed fees regime for criminal legal aid. The CBA is arguing that the proposed fixed fees regime is illegal, wasn't properly consulted upon and will undermine access to justice for all citizens.

"John Key wants to undermine one of the cornerstones of our democracy - equal access to justice - in order to save a few dollars," Mrs Turei said.

"The real result is that many vulnerable people will be left with inadequate representation, while the costs are simply shifted to other parts of the system.

"This judicial review highlights yet another example of John Key's user-pays parliament. Those with money can have access to justice while those without means are being forced to tough it out.

"The Greens call on John Key to admit his mistake and stop the roll out of the scheme," Mrs Turei said.


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