Steep rise in requests for legal aid from Govt.


POND ISLAND–Residents are increasingly turning to Government for assistance with getting justice in civil and labour cases.

The Ministry of Social Development and Labour VSA has seen the number of people asking for assistance in January double over the figures for the same month last year. The total for this year was 22, a year earlier it stood at 10. Of those, three were civil cases and 19 were labour-related, compared to two and eight respectively for 2017.

In February, 28 persons asked for legal aid, compared to 11 in 2016. March also saw a significant jump – 17 requests compared to four a year earlier.

The jump in legal aid requests started post-Hurricane Irma. October saw four requests filed, three less than in the same month of 2016. However, the number did not stay low. The following month, November 2017, logged 26 cases, the majority being labour-related. November 2016 only had six requests.

December 2017 had the highest number of requests so far. That month logged 38 requests for assistance from Government, compared to just six in December 2016.
Women formed the majority of persons asking Government for assistance.
Three persons requested assistance with their divorce.

Both Dutch citizens and permanent residents have requested assistance from Government.
The Ministry has granted requests for legal assistance. This help forms part of the Government’s social responsibility to the residents.

Source: The Daily Herald