Urgent Support Needed for Refugees

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6Oct

refugees2015_W300BHT’s Immigration Legal Service (ILS) is raising much needed funds to support their ongoing work with asylum seekers and refugees, which has seen a sharp increase in cases as a result of the war in Syria.

The service, which provides legal representation for those seeking asylum, operates on a not-for-profit basis and has been severely affected by cuts made to the Legal Aid budget.

The current crisis has been the main focus of the media in recent weeks, due to the sheer number of migrants leaving Syria and travelling through Europe. BHT’s Immigration Legal Service sees the people behind the headlines; devastated firstly by war, then by the separation of families.

Please click here to donate to the Immigration Legal Service

Below is an account of a Syrian family we are currently attempting to reunite through Refugee Family Reunion provisions, cases which no longer qualify for Legal Aid:
Case study

When the parents arrived in the UK in early 2014 they were granted asylum.

Their two sons, who lived with them in Syria, then applied to join them in the UK under the refugee family reunion provisions of the Immigration Rules. Their younger son aged 16 was granted asylum, however their older son Khalil, being over 18, was refused entry to the UK.

Fearing for his safety, Khalil had already fled to Lebanon and has since made the journey to the UK across ten European countries, including in a dinghy from Turkey to Greece. He eventually made it to Calais where two other British family members went to visit him by car; however, he still had to make a dangerous and illegal journey hidden in a lorry in order to enter the UK.

Like many Syrians this family has nothing to return to in their own country. Despite the ongoing crisis in Syria, there is no exceptional Home Office policy to allow Syrian asylum seekers to enter to the UK and to seek asylum. However, if they can make it to the UK they most likely will be granted asylum. Had the Home Office allowed this family’s older son to be reunited with his family he would not have had to make this dangerous journey to the UK to claim asylum.

We will now work to ensure that he is granted asylum and is able to restore his family life in safety.

Please click here to donate to the Immigration Legal Service

A significant amount of work undertaken by ILS involves the representation of children who are seeking asylum and who have no familial support to rely upon. This often involves conducting work for them on a pro bono basis, which in turn puts considerable strain on the resources of the service. The initial fundraising target is a modest £5000 – however, this amount alone would ensure that a number of vulnerable individuals would be able to secure quality legal representation to help them try and secure a safe life for themselves.

ILS Solicitor

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