Access to justice” – what is it? Is it just a high-sounding, but amorphous phrase? Let me give you my definition. To me, access to justice means making the judicial system work for everybody – regardless of fear for one’s personal safety or the ability to pay for a lawyer; regardless of the ability to speak English; regardless of the ability to walk, or hear, or see.

Equal access to justice is a priority. Why? Because equal access to justice is the core principle of our constitutional democracy. It affects the well-being of us all. We can have the most brilliant judges, the cleanest and most high-tech courthouses, a seamlessly efficient management structure – but where the people have no confidence that every person can find justice in our courts, democracy will wither on the vine. In its place will grow the poisonous notion that our legal system works only for the rich, the powerful, the strong, the well-connected.

Margaret H. Marshall  b. 1944     United States      Chief Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
Historical Age, Age of Reason 1650-1950; Astrological Age, Pisces 1 AD – 2000; Sun Sign, Virgo.