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And an open-minded justice secretary
Last week, the Ministry of Justice published a consultation paper seeking views on how the government could support and strengthen the openness of the courts and tribunals — despite the current “challenging fiscal environment”.
The topics on which evidence is invited include:
Accessing courts and tribunals
Remote observation and live-streaming
Single justice procedure
Publication of judgments and sentencing remarks
Access to court documents and information
Data access and reuse
Public legal education
You won’t be surprised to know that I support greater openness — particularly the measured extension of court broadcasting in England and Wales that the government seems to be contemplating.
I refer to this very briefly in my latest column for today’s Law Society Gazette. But the main purpose of the column is to assess Alex Chalk’s first couple of outings in the Commons this week as secretary of state for justice.
There is now a real sense of optimism in legal circles that Rishi Sunak has two well-respected lawyers in government — the other is Victoria Prentis, the attorney general — who will act as a steading influence on others around the cabinet table.
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