Statement from Justice and Solicitor General on Legal Aid

Alberta Justice and Solicitor General has been in contact with Legal Aid Alberta regarding the three applications made in court last week for legal counsel.

Assistant Chief Judge Anderson ordered that assistance be provided within seven days or the charges against the three individuals would be stayed. The ministry has already been in touch with Legal Aid to ensure representation is provided and funded, which will be in addition to Legal Aid’s 2014-15 budget. The Court has been advised of this action.

Alberta Justice and Solicitor General will deal with any future similar orders on a case by case basis.

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One Response to Statement from Justice and Solicitor General on Legal Aid

  1. Kevan Rhead says:

    It occurs to me that reliance on a “case by case basis” right now involves being told by a judge or justice that particular cases in fact be funded by the government. Why not budget the appropriate amount for legal aid so that cases meeting the legal aid assistance criteria be automatically funded.
    At present it seems that some mandated frugality may deny funding that otherwise would be forthcoming. Instead of the transparent administration that the Conservatives have avowed to achive, it is not clear in this example what factors determine the actual funding of needy cases.

    When such a situation occurs at the same time that seniors long term care is inadequately funded (I hear that sprinklers for fire suppression are not provided.); health, basic education, advanced education and other social needs are grossly inadequately funded; I get very convinced that this province is decidedly mismanaged.

    We have no problem with the funding of horse racing, billions spent on corporate welfare and oil royality give-aways, more billions in give-aways for the rich in the form of the flat tax, and the jiggery-pokery, convoluted P3 contracts for public projects the the government insists on with no evidence that any of these schemes are in the public interest.

    All together, billions and billions spent with little obvious benefit for the public interest. On the other hand, so many of these billions yield very generous political contributions to the party which mismanages our economy and mismanages social needs the adequate funding of legal aid to some of the more desperate individuals in our society.

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