What is an All-Party Parliamentary Group?
All-Party Parliamentary Groups (APPGs) are informal, cross-party interest groups of MPs and Peers interested in a particular issue. APPGs do not have any power to make laws and are not funded by Parliament. There are a great number of APPGs, covering many and such diverse fields such as health, education, transport, defence, finance, the media and sports.
The APPG on Legal Aid (the Group) was established in July 2009, and is co-sponsored by the Legal Aid Practitioners Group (LAPG) and Young Legal Aid Lawyers (YLAL). The Group brings together Members of the House of Lords and the House of Commons with the singular purpose to discuss issues relating to legal aid. The Group meets regularly when Parliament is sitting to discuss topics that are important in the legal aid sector and to hear from those that work within it.
The Group’s terms of reference are as follows:
“To promote parliamentary and public understanding of the importance of the role of publicly funded legal services as a pillar of the welfare state and in reducing inequalities in society. To scrutinize and influence any proposals for the reform of Legal Aid provision to ensure that access to justice for all members of society is preserved and improved.”
The Group acts as an important forum for discussion of all issues surrounding legal aid. It provides a point of contact between the Government, Parliament and all who have an interest in the legal aid sector: these include clients, lawyers, the wider public, professional bodies, practitioners’ groups, charities, campaign organisations, and many others. It constitutes a practical way of engaging with the on-going reform process through contact with Parliamentarians – both MPs and Lords – who have a direct influence on the outcome of that process.
Please note: as a registered All-Party Parliamentary Group, the APPG on Legal Aid is permitted to make use of the Parliamentary crowned portcullis symbol. However, the House of Commons takes no responsibility for this website or any of its content.
The Group will hold its Inaugural Meeting of the 2017 Parliamentary Session on Wednesday, 12 July 2017, to continue its work in discussing issues relating to legal aid.