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Devon Chambers attend LCCSA Rally

Westminster Central Hall was the venue for a lively rally held by the London Criminal Courts Solicitors' Association (LCCSA) to highlight the lack of attention that the legal aid cuts have received in the election build up.

The line-up included a whole list of leading campaigners including Baroness Helena Kennedy QC, Shami Chakrabarti (Liberty), Sir Anthony Hooper, Bill Waddington (CLSA Chair), Jon Black (LCCSA President) and Joe Mensha-Dankwah (Black Solicitor Society) to name a few.

Leading the way was Sir Alan Moses who stressed that judges need advocates just like people need medicine. This comparison wa furthered by Mark Fenhalls (Criminal Bar Association Vice-Chair) whom likened justice as being as fundamental as health and education. Other speakers stressed the importance of legal aid on not only the junior end of the bar, but the devastating impact any further cuts would have on BAME and high street solicitors.

The rally was held to send a clear message and it did. The message was typified by a letter sent by Michael Mansfield QC who could not attend due to his current commitments at the Hillsborough inquiry. The message was a clear and strong one. He identified the dramatic and stark impact that the cuts have had creating a two tiered justice system as well as the government's inroads into the rule of law by its tightening of judicial review. He called for no returns and the withdrawal of services if these savage cuts continue.

Despite the rally having a resolute atmosphere, there were moments of light heartedness including a video made by Rat Films. There was also a message of hope. If the professions unite in direct action then the government's ideological assault on justice can be stopped.