Community Legal Clinic

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In the five months since it opened its doors, a free clinic for those seeking legal advice has been inundated with more than 1,100 clients.

Run by the pro bono service of the Law Society, the Community Legal Clinic is open four nights a week and serves as a first contact point for people wondering whether a dispute or grievance they have could stand up to scrutiny in court.

The society's pro bono service director Lim Tanguy told The Straits Times that the clinic was set up to help more poor and middle class people gain access to justice.

Such an initiative has been long overdue. Kudos to the kind hearted lawyers who have decided to help the poor. While such efforts are admirable, a complimentary program of education might actually come in handy.

Given the situation where so many people are unaware of their legal rights, perhaps the government could introduce a new campaign that educates the local populace of their legal rights, and maybe distribute information booklets clarifying gray areas in legal issues. After all, the comparative advantage for lawyers is in doing actual legal work rather than merely giving basic advice. It should instead be the duty of the government to educate and inform its citizens of their rights and how exactly they may be exercised in court.