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Public Understanding of the Law

Volume 607: debated on Tuesday 8 March 2016

The Ministry of Justice is working to increase public awareness of the law and of important initiatives in the criminal justice and civil law system. We do that by disseminating information to the media, by using our website and digital channels, and through bespoke campaigns of particular importance, such as on access to victim services.

I welcome the efforts made by the Minister and my right hon. Friend the Lord Chancellor. May I encourage my hon. Friend to do more to broaden public legal education? Having just set up a new all-party parliamentary group on the subject, I urge him to work with us to provide such education not just in schools and through adult services, but perhaps in prisons. Although it may not reduce the inmate population, it may reduce the future conviction rate.

My hon. Friend is right. I commend him for his efforts and his initiative. One illustration of the things we are doing is the victims information service, which provides information on the criminal justice system, on what a victim can expect and on restorative justice. He is right—we need to strive to bring the law and its operation closer to the citizens it serves.