More people will receive legal aid following changes to the Law on Legal Assistance.

Nguyễn Thị Minh, head of the Legal Assistance Department under the Ministry of Justice, said yesterday at a discussion on promoting justice access for poor and disadvantaged groups that the change reflects the Party and Government’s concern for disadvantaged people.

According to newly approved amendment to the Law on Legal Assistance, the number of legal aid beneficiary groups has increased from six groups to fourteen. The groups are divided based on level of poverty and other categories. With the new categories, the government can be more precise in dispensing aid.

When the law meets the beneficiaries’ full need for legal assistance, it will contribute to effective implementation of social welfare policies, Minh said.

However, the increase in aid is expected to bring challenges for authorized agencies and require them to carefully prepare human and financial resources to successfully implement the law.

Minh said that peoples’ committees at the provincial level are responsible for allocating money, human resources and facilities to ensure legal aid implementation, prioritizing sources for litigation. Localities must mobilize social sources and support from international organizations to effectively implement legal aid.

Denying requests for legal assistance should not happen, Minh said.

Đỗ Xuân Lân, head of Legal Dissemination and Education Department under the justice ministry said that reconciliation work at the local level has helped people understand their legitimate rights and benefits as well as those of other people involved in specific legal events. This helps people select appropriate legal solutions.

Effective reconciliation at the local level will encourage people to actively implement legal responsibilities in addressing disputes and conflicts.

Lân proposed that agencies link reconciliation work at the local level with the activities of lawyers, legal consultatnts and legal education.


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