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Cumbernauld Labour say SNP plans would be the "end for local justice" in Cumbernauld

Written by Scott Campbell.
Published at 19:19 GMT on Monday, May 20th, 2013.

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CUMBERNAULD’S Labour MP and Councillors have bound together to call for the Scottish Government to step in and cease proposals which could see the town’s Justice of the Peace court closed.

Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East Labour MP Gregg McClymont has joined Labour Councillors Alan Graham and Stephanie Muir, to call for the Scottish Government to bin the proposals, which they have labelled as an “end to local justice in Cumbernauld”.

If closed, then Cumbernauld’s Justice of the Peace court will see services relocated to Coatbridge, and later Airdrie. However, North Lanarkshire Council has now stepped into the debate; responding a government consultation into the proposals.

North Lanarkshire Council’s response on the consultation on ‘Shaping Scotland’s Court Services’, which was approved at the recent Corporate Services Committee, clearly sets out opposition to the closure of the court, and the Committee has also agreed to seek the support of local MSPs on the response.

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Commenting, Cumbernauld MP, Gregg McClymont said: “Local courts ensure easy and speedy access to justice across the country and knowledge of the area and circumstances is plays a vital role.”

"I welcome the Council’s commitment to oppose the SNP in their determination to remove yet another vital service from Cumbernauld.

“A worrying pattern is emerging in Cumbernauld as the SNP Government continues to remove services from our town."

Cllr Stephanie Muir, who sits on the Corporate Services Committee, added: “I am pleased that my fellow Labour Councillors acted to support NLC’s response to the consultation.

“The removal of such an important service will restrict access to Justice for local people. The reasoning for the proposals is flawed and does not take in to account that Cumbernauld JP Court serves a disparate population and that many court users will face long, expensive journeys.”

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