Austerity is hitting at the heart of justice

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The Public Accounts Committee said in a press release issued overnight that:

The criminal justice system is close to breaking point, the Committee of Public Accounts warns today.

In its First Report of the new Session, the Committee describes the system as “bedevilled by long standing poor performance including delays and inefficiencies, and costs are being shunted from one part of the system to another”.

It concludes the system is not good enough at supporting victims and witnesses and timely access to justice is too dependent on where victims and witnesses live.

This is staggering. Right across the political spectrum it used to be presumed that the upholding of law and order was one of the basic necessities that a government had to deliver. And now, largely because of cuts, that is not happening.

Austerity is hitting at the heart of justice.