Jessica Morden Jessica Morden - Labour MP for Newport East, Shadow Deputy Leader of the House of Commons and PPS to Keir Starmer
In Parliament today I challenged the UK Government over an ongoing courts backlog that has been exacerbated by the pandemic.
During the first quarter of 2020, Crown Prosecution figures show that the volume of outstanding cases rose from 109,469 to just over 170,000.
Speaking in Attorney General questions today, I said “The backlog of cases has meant a serious delay in the ability to access justice. As the Law Society has pointed out, investing in legal aid for early advice and legal representation can ensure that judicial time is used as efficiently as possible in cases that do go to court. So what’s the Attorney General doing with the Lord Chancellor to ensure legal aid and early advice are funded properly to help tackle the backlog?”
In response, Attorney General Suella Braverman MP said as working with all government departments to support publicly funded lawyers and barristers.
The Chair of the Criminal Bar Association has rightly highlighted that inadequate funding of the CPS and a decade of swingeing cuts has exacerbated the problems the criminal justice system has faced during this pandemic, with record backlogs. Urgent action is needed to address the damage that has been done and ensure that victims of crime get justice even in these challenging times.