Ian Austin MP

Labour MP for Dudley North

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Austin to present 2,000 signature petition to parliament

Dudley MP Ian Austin will present a petition against court closures in Dudley signed by over 2,000 local people to Parliament on Tuesday evening.

The petition calls on the government to come up with new plans that would keep Dudley’s criminal court open.

Currently the government’s preferred plan is to close Dudley’s criminal courts, but local justice officials have recently announced a review of the proposals.

Austin has welcomed the decision to review the plans, but is calling on the government to drop them entirely.

Ian Austin MP said:

“We’ve had more names coming in every day, and the fact that 2,000 people have signed our petition in just a few weeks shows people in Dudley don’t want their criminal court closed down.

“The Government’s plans would make Dudley the largest town in the UK without a criminal court when we should be moving more services into the town centre, not taking them away.

“Magistrates, victims, witnesses and others directly involved with the court tell me the closure would make it harder for local victims to testify, harder for local people to volunteer in court and harder for the press to deter crime by reporting on local cases. People need to see that people are being held to account for crimes that take place in Dudley.

“I’m pleased that local justice officials have decided to review these proposals, but local people are absolutely clear that they won’t accept any option that results in the closure of our criminal courts.”

 

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