Damned if she does and damned if she doesn’t?
Justice Secretary Liz Truss has ordered a review which could bring an end to alleged domestic violence perpetrators directly cross-examining their victims in family law courts. This would bring these cases in line with criminal ones where the practice has been banned.
A welcome step, you might think, but pantomime villain Truss has come under criticism for it.
Though legal commentators were shocked to learn violent and abusive men are allowed to cross-examine their exes in family law hearings, the Ministry of Justice’s plans to ban this practice haven’t been met with quite as much enthusiasm.
Take criminal law specialist Mark George QC, who — reacting to today’s news — had this to say:
The chickens are coming home to roost https://t.co/vhM5N7AenS cut legal aid, there are no lawyers so parties have to ask Qs themselves 1/2
— Mark George (@Mark_George_QC) January 4, 2017
Then there was Steve Hynes, director of the Legal Action Group, who thinks a “wider review” is needed:
Good MoJ wants to stop victims of DV being cross examined by abusers but need wider review of legal aid and DV rules https://t.co/dMQly82BRV
— Steve Hynes (@SteveHynesLAG) January 5, 2017
Others said the Justice Secretary should not be “shocked” domestic abusers take advantage of legal aid cuts, while another questioned whether this would mean some men would be banned from questioning partners’ testimony.
In her short time as Lord Chancellor, Truss has managed to make a name for herself as, well, pretty cringey.
When her Cabinet position was confirmed, a video of Truss getting passionate about cheese began to do the rounds. Since then the Twitterati couldn’t help but facepalm after she told MPs barking dogs help deter drones from prisons. This week, the MP for South West Norfolk was voted “The Cabinet Clown 2016” in a Twitter poll run by former prisoner and academic Alex Cavendish.
The final results are in! The Cabinet Clown 2016, as chosen in a poll of 745 voters is…
Liz Truss (55%)
Davis (6%) pic.twitter.com/g2qUVKUUha
— Alex Cavendish (@PrisonUK) January 3, 2017
Since it’s New Year’s resolution time, will 2017 spell the end of ‘moron Truss’?
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