Dáil Éireann - Volume 470 - 15 October, 1996

Written Answers. - Court Resources.

236. Mr. Callely asked the Minister for Justice if her attention has been drawn to the fact that the courts and the judicial system do not have adequate resources to operate effectively and that it can no longer cope with the new and current demands; when measures will be in place to resolve these difficulties; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [18343/96]

Minister for Justice (Mrs. Owen): I have outlined both in this House and elsewhere on several occasions, the very extensive range of measures I have introduced to tackle resource and other issues affecting the courts.

These include the largest ever increase, at one stroke, in the number of judges and support staff, radical overhaul of the courts by the Denham Group and the provision, this year alone, of almost £7.4 million for the building and refurbishment of court accommodation.

The significant reduction in delays in the courts convinces me — and I am sure everybody concerned about the problem, which had, incidentally, been there for years before I took office — that my initiatives are already bearing fruit.