Solicitor General Robert Buckland QC MP has launched a new panel to drive forward legal education initiatives

Public Legal Education (PLE) will be given a new focus following the launch of a panel that will bring key representatives together to support and drive forward legal education initiatives.

Solicitor General Robert Buckland QC MP will chair the first meeting of the newly established PLE Panel later today.

The Panel, formed of key organisations, will promote the importance of teaching people about the law and their basic civil and criminal rights - from knowing if you’re entitled to a refund in a shop or whether you’ve been a victim of discrimination.

Speaking ahead of the meeting, the Solicitor General said:

Teaching people about their legal rights and responsibilities, together with helping them gain the confidence and skills to get access to justice can really make a difference to people’s lives – as well as our legal system.

The new Panel will help drive forward Public Legal Education so more people can reap the benefits.

There are many ways to teach people about the law, such as interactive presentations, mock trials and role play exercises to awareness raising campaigns or information in leaflets – which can be tailored to different groups, from educating primary and secondary school pupils to prison inmates, community groups and homeless people.

The Panel will provide a forum for the Law Officers to work with organisations in the field, enable public legal education to flourish and to encourage initiatives which improve legal capability.

The Panel will meet bi-annually is formed of key PLE representatives including those from the following organisations: Citizenship Foundation, Legal Education Foundation, The Law Society, Bar Council, CILEX, Magistrates’ Association, Ministry of Justice, Judicial Office, Solicitors Regulation Authority, Citizens Advice, Law for Life, Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law, Youth Access and Law Centres Federation.

Other participants may be invited to attend meetings on an ad hoc or permanent basis with the agreement of the Panel.