15 July 2008

The Judges Strike Back

You'll recall that a while back in CLTV I discussed a letter from the head PD in Kentucky wherein he announced that, due to budget cuts, PD's across Kentucky were going to sharply curtail the work that they did and that conflict counsel would no longer be paid out of PD budgets (as they had previously). In particular, the letter singled out the Lexington-Fayette courts and said they would be the hardest hit.

Well, at least one judge isn't having it. Judge Joseph Bouvier (pictured left in the only public website picture I could find - sorry Judge) set out an order requiring PD's to represent those facing forced mental treatment:
This Court finds it unconscionable that the Department (of) Public Advocacy would abandon its most vulnerable clients in order to make a point over a budgetary dispute.
As well, all the Fayette District Judges are going to meet to decide if they are going to force PD's to do even more.

This article at the Herald Leader also talks about how judges in other jurisdictions have been trying to deal with the PD withdrawal.

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