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McInnes: Court closures will confirm SNP as party of centralisation

April 24, 2013 5:08 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

During an opposition day debate on access to justice in Scotland,Alison McInnesAlison McInnes Scottish Liberal Democrats urged SNP members to heed the concerns of rural communities. This comes as SNP Ministers accepted proposals to close a fifth of Scotland's Sheriff Courts.

Scottish Liberal Democrat justice spokesperson Alison McInnes MSP has warned that the court closures would confirm the SNP as the party of centralisation.

Commenting, Ms McInnes said:

"Scottish Liberal Democrats are anxious about the impact these court closures could have on local rural communities. The needs of witnesses, victims, police and others will not be addressed more effectively by these proposed changes. This will increase travel times and costs for people who live in rural areas.

"Instead of meaningful reform, what we are seeing is further erosion of local decision making and locally delivered services. The SNP just seems incapable of understanding Scotland's rural communities.

"Blanket closure of our local courts will confirm the SNP as the party of centralisation. Scottish Liberal Democrats will be urging local SNP MSPs to put the needs of their local community first."