The cuts that broke the justice system

Blind justice lawsource: Politics.co.uk
published: 26 November 2018

Leaking roofs, seats held together with gaffer tape, flooded toilets, broken heating and broken plug sockets. If our hospitals or schools looked like this, there’d be a public outcry. But these are our courts, so no-one really cares.

The cuts to criminal justice have become visible in the furniture of the court system, but they go much further than that. They are eroding the basic principles it operates under.

Next year, legal aid reaches its 70th birthday. It is a landmark principle that justice should be free to everyone, that publicly-funded legal advice should be available to those accused of a crime by the state.

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Silent marches continue to highlight Aboriginal deaths in custody

Protest marchall credits: Green Left
published: 8 November 2018

About 50 people held a silent march through the beachside suburb of Manly on November 3 against Aboriginal deaths in custody.

Relatives of five victims of the racist criminal justice system who died in police or prison custody were present. These included the families of David Gundy, who died in 1989, TJ Hickey (2004), Mark Mason (2010), Eric Whittaker (2017) and Nathan Reynolds (2018).

Many Aboriginal and non-Indigenous supporters also attended the silent march, which was the eleventh of its kind organised by the Indigenous Social Justice Association (ISJA) in Sydney and regional New South Wales over recent months.

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The Guardian view on police and child spies: ends don’t always justify the means

Undercover Spy Hidingsource: The Guardian
published: 20 July 2018

Downing Street tells us that child spies are used very rarely by British police and intelligence agencies, and only when it is judged really vital. How reassuring. We would not know they were being used at all were it not for government plans to relax the controls on their use.

The House of Lords committee on secondary legislation has revealed that children are being used in covert operations against terrorists, gangs and drug dealers, and child sexual exploitation (and in doing so, incidentally, demonstrated parliament at its best and most useful, in a week where it has often looked at its worst).

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