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31 May 2013

Is Access to Justice A Reality for Section 75 Groups?

Issues surrounding care homes closures, immigration quotas, the rights of the disabled, same sex marriage are amongst a number of issues which will be examined as part of a new seminar series being launched this week. 

The ‘Diversity and the Law’ series of seminars has been launched by the Law Society of Northern Ireland and will examine the impact of the law on issues surrounding homelessness, disability, religion, politics, race, sexuality and age in Northern Ireland.

The series has been designed to facilitate a broad discussion between various interest groups, representative bodies and Government agencies with a view to identifying those issues of concern and the sharing of best practice amongst organisations.

The theme of each of the seminars reflects the different categories set out in Section 75 of the Northern Ireland Act 1998.

Commenting on the new series, the President of the Law Society of Northern Ireland, Michael Robinson, said:

 “The Society has been working over the last number of months to develop the new Diversity series which we believe will provide discussion and debate on the impact of the law on those defined by Section 75 classification.

It is timely that these seminars are taking place in light of the ongoing impact of the economic recession, cuts to Government budgets, benefits and services and the implications for the law and access to justice in Northern Ireland”.

The first in the series of seminars is on ‘Sexual Orientation, Gender, Marital Status and with or without dependents’.

Speaking in advance of the first seminar, the President of the Society said:

“The focus of the first seminar is on those issues surrounding marital status, sexuality and homelessness in Northern Ireland and it is important that we reflect on the impact of the law through the experiences of those affected”.

The series of seminars are scheduled to last until October 2013 with an examination of the Section 75 classifications including age, disability and Race. 

-         ENDS -