Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Awards 2013 - Short List announced...
The short list has been published for the Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year 2013.
Organised by the not-for-profit organisation the Legal Aid Practitioner’s Group (LAPG), the awards now in their 11th year, provide an opportunity to recognise excellence among access to justice lawyers…and what a year it’s been!
Among those nominated are Shauneen Lambe, the criminal defence solicitor behind the landmark decision forcing police to treat 17 years olds in custody as children and Margaret Gordon who acted for protestor Alfie Meadows when he was cleared of violent disorder at an anti-university tuition fees protest where he suffered brain injury after allegedly being hit by a police baton. The student wrote in support of the Solicitor’s nomination “She clearly has a strong moral and political commitment to legal aid and the right of everyone to equal access to justice”.
There are ten award categories in total.
Carol Storer, Director of LAPG believes that the awards are particularly important this year because “…practitioners have had to absorb the cuts to the scheme set out in the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act which came in on 1st April 2013. Nine days later further cuts were announced in a consultation which has proposed further cuts in civil law and proposed a major change in how criminal defence work is delivered. The profession is reeling. Our aim with the awards has always been to celebrate the work carried out by legal aid practitioners, day in day out working for clients who are often vulnerable, working on cases which are often complex, sometimes unpopular but which ensure that the rule of law is upheld.” As Carol Storer states the awards are there to “…celebrate the dedication and service given to clients by the lawyers who deliver this service..”
The winners will be announced at a ceremony at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in central London on 2 July 2013. We are proud of our 28 year association with public funding and are delighted to be sponsoring the awards. We wish every nominee the best of luck...and look forward to meeting you at the event (and subject to deciphering the dress code)!