B.C. legal aid lawyers say province must boost funding or they'll strike

Randi-Marie Adams / The Canadian Press
03/05/2019

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A group representing B.C. Legal aid lawyers says it will ask its members to vote in favor of a strike if the Government doesn’t boost its funding starting April 1.

The Association of Legal Aid Lawyers says per capita funding has shrunk by 60 per cent since 1992 and B.C. ranks 10th out of 12 provinces and territories in per capita funding.

Director Richard Fowler says the provincial government must restore per capita funding to 1992 levels, adjusted for inflation. He also says legal aid lawyers have only had one pay raise in 28 years and their numbers have dropped to 1,000 from 1,500 in 1991.

The Ministry of the Attorney General did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Fowler says the reduction in funding means only a small number of people qualify for legal aid, and if the government doesn't announce funding increases by March 13, the group will ask its 514 members to vote for the job action.

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