VALENCIA (EFE). The new dean of the Valencia Bar Association (ICAV), Jose Sorianotakes office this Friday with the purpose of “recovering its leading role in Valencian civil society” and reconstituting a pressure group or “lobby“to which “is taken into consideration”.
In an interview with EFE, this family lawyer, a 51-year-old Valencian and a great fan of motorcycles, advocates “taking the College out on the streets” and improving the institution’s communication, both internally and in its dialogue with the administration, and “not only that of Justice”, he stresses.
“For this reason, I will propose a dialogue campaign with the rest of the administrations. With Traffic, the Treasury or Social Security, because not all specialties of law go through a court,” he says.
“In recent years the College has not participated in civil society; it has to go out onto the streets again, to be known and respected. Hence the need to be again”lobby‘”, says Soriano, who also advocates closer relations with the schools of Madrid, Barcelona and Malaga, which make up the so-called G-4.
Controversial legislative reforms
“It would have been useful to compare or verify certain legislative reforms with these colleges,” says the new dean, alluding to “certain laws that fail to be put into practice.”
Its negative consequences, he believes, could have been avoided “by talking to those of us who already knew that the sentences were going to be reduced, that when we relocate the (sexist) violence courts, complaints are discouraged, that women are not going to be attended to or that they are not there is always a taxi or patrol car available”.
On this matter, the Royal Decree for the grouping of judicial parties in matters of gender violence, Soriano admits that, although there were meetings on the matter between the ICAV and the Department of Justice in 2021, the information process was ignored, which is why The restructuring of these courts is being appealed.
“The administration has to be more sensitive when making these decisions, because the complaint process is made difficult. The legislator, who has never usually practiced, has made an attractive floor plan, but the staging, the transformation of that 3D plane, it is complicated -he warns-. Because in reality the Civil Guard does not always have personnel or cars, among many other factors”.
Soriano has extensive experience in management work at the Bar Association, since he has been part of the governing board from 2011 to 2020, the last two years as secretary.
Fight against internal disaffection
Of a total of more than 11,000 lawyers (around 7,500 active), only around 1,500 have voted in the last elections, which shows an “absolute disaffection” of the Valencian lawyers with respect to their College.
“The vast majority of them do not need to change anything or propose initiatives, and I believe that what we must do is change the voting system and enable electronic voting. It does not make sense that we can make monetary transactions or identify ourselves from our office in front of the administration and we can’t vote”, he laments.
“I think that until now the way of voting has not been changed because whoever was inside -in the leadership- did not want to leave, although it is true that since 2010 the mandates have been for one legislature -four years- and I have no intention of my case is different”, adds José Soriano.
Another of the most immediate changes will be the suppression of the school fee between March and June, in compensation for the closure of the school during the worst of the pandemic, the reduction of that fee of 5% this year and progressively until 20 % in the next four years.
“The quotas have already been lowered twice during the deanship of Rafael Bonmatí and it can be done again, it is a matter of being on top of spending. For this we will recover the economic commission that existed at the time,” he explains.
“We are still expensive compared to other schools -he acknowledges-. It is true that we are admitted for the training, deontology and services we provide, but I understand that the ICAV cannot have benefits, it cannot earn money with training, for example, but just cover expenses.
Soriano, dean of the ICAV: The College must recover the function of ‘lobby’