Ministry of Justice
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Legal aid minister launches free legal advice service
Low income earners across England and Wales will benefit from free legal advice for debt, housing, family and employment problems with the launch of a new legal advice helpline in Swansea, said Legal Aid Minister Willy Bach today.
Swansea business, Ty Arian, has been awarded a government contract to deliver specialist legal advice to people on low incomes through the Community Legal Advice helpline.
Attending the launch in Swansea, Legal Aid Minister Willy Bach said:
‘There is nothing more important than helping people in these difficult times, dealing with their family, employment or housing problems as quickly and effectively as possible. The advisors behind this free telephone legal advice line do an excellent job and can make a real difference to the outcomes of people’s day to day lives.’
‘I’m pleased to launch the new Community Legal Advice phone line service, which will be run by local Swansea business Ty Arian and help thousands of low income earners right across England and Wales. It’s also a big win for Swansea, resulting in around 20 new jobs for the local community.’
Since the Legal Services Commission introduced the Community Legal Advice helpline in 2004, the service has delivered real help and legal advice to the most vulnerable people in society. The helpline, funded by legal aid, now receives around 70,000 calls a month providing free legal advice on debt, welfare benefits, housing and employment.
‘The current economic climate means that more and more people are struggling to cope. The award of contracts to skilled and dedicated providers, like Ty Arian, ensures that help and advice is available. This means that people can have better access to high quality advice.’
Along with the telephone advice, Ty Arian also provide advice to prisoners and their families in Parc Prison which aims to reduce reoffending, as well as running specialist training courses for other lawyers and advisers in social welfare law.
While in Wales, Willy Bach also visited Morgan’s Solicitors, a law firm with bases in Cardiff, Swansea and Milford Haven who provide free legal advice to help families deal with issues like divorce and child custody arrangements. He also met with team at the Public Defender Service and solicitors Avery Naylor, before meeting First Minister Rhodri Morgan at the Welsh Assembly Government in Cardiff.
Interview and photo opportunity
- What: Launch of Ty Arian Community Legal Advice helpline
- Who: Legal Aid Minister Willy Bach, Legal Services Commission Wales Director Paul Davies and Ty Arian staff
- When: 12:30pm Thursday 17 September
- Where: Ty Arian, 1 Alexandra Road, Swansea SA1 5ED.
Media enquiries: Ministry of Justice Press Office – Jo Oakes 020 3334 3513 or 07948 221 949.
Notes for editors
- Community Legal Advice is a free and confidential advice service paid for by legal aid. Advice is available from 9:00am to 8:00pm on Monday to Friday.
The helpline 0845 345 4 345 provides independent advice about debt, education, benefits and tax credits, employment and housing problems to people who live on low income or benefits.
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