NRPF: Overcoming barriers to support during Covid

Tuesday 8 December 2020

This webinar is brought to you by the Garden Court Chambers Community Care Team.

Date: Tuesday 8 December 2020
Time: 5pm - 6:30pm
Venue: Online  
Cost: Free
Areas of Law: Community Care Law

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The pandemic has exacerbated the difficulties faced by individuals who are ineligible for public funds by virtue of their immigration status. Access to appropriate support and accommodation has become even harder. The central government response has in some cases weakened provision for vulnerable migrants and is subject to a number of ongoing challenges. Local government support has been variable and inconsistent. Join Garden Court's Community Care team who will be discussing these issues and practical solutions for our clients. 

The webinar will be chaired by Ubah Dirie of Garden Court Chambers and will cover the following topics:

  1. Local authority powers to support rough sleepers during the pandemic
    Connor Johnston, Garden Court Chambers 

  2. Trafficking support: its sudden cessation and inadequate reinstatement 
    - Miranda Butler, Garden Court Chambers

  3. Asylum support: challenging subsistence rates and the Home Office’s new regime 
    Taimour Lay & Raza Halim, both of Garden Court Chambers




Ubah Dirie, Barrister, Garden Court Chambers (Year of Call: 2014)(Chair)
Ubah Dirie, is recognised as a tenacious and client focused advocate who specialises in advice, representation and advocacy in all areas of immigration, asylum and asylum support, nationality, EU free movement, deportation and detention. 

Raza Halim, Barrister, Garden Court Chambers (Year of Call: 2009)
Raza Halim specialises in public law, with an emphasis on refugee law and human rights. He specialises in judicial review and appellate work in the fields of unlawful detention, international protection and national security matters in SIAC. Raza advises NGOs and charities on bringing strategic challenges to unlawful policies and represents detainees for Bail for Immigration Detainees.

Taimour Lay, Barrister, Garden Court Chambers (Year of Call: 2011)
Taimour practises in immigration, inquests and human rights. He specialises in judicial review challenges to removal, unlawful detention, Dublin III transfers, certifications, NRM trafficking decisions and failures to provide adequate asylum support. He is a contributing author to Macdonald’s Immigration Law and Practice, 10th Edition. 

Connor Johnston, Garden Court Chambers (Year of Call: 2010)
Connor primarily practises in housing, homelessness, community care, asylum support and public law. He is committed to legal aid work and to representing the interests of vulnerable clients and those who are homeless or at risk of losing their home. He was appointed to the EHRC panel of preferred counsel in 2019 and was the Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year (Newcomer) in 2015. He frequently represents clients who have no recourse to public funds who are seeking local authority or Home Office support and has been a volunteer advocate at the First Tier Tribunal (Asylum Support) with the Asylum Support Appeals Project for a number of years. He has a particular interest in cases that involve the interplay between community care, homelessness and asylum support. He is the co-author of 'Housing Allocation and Homelessness' (Lexis 5th edn 2018) and is currently co-authoring the forthcoming 'Migrant Support Handbook' for LAG, publication is expected in 2021.

Miranda Butler, Barrister, Garden Court Chambers (Year of Call: 2013)
Miranda works in a broad range of public law areas, including unlawful detention, community care,  healthcare provision, trafficking, and strategic litigation. She is regularly instructed in judicial review challenges, including urgent matters and applications for interim relief.  Miranda is a member of the the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s Panel of Counsel and in 2020 she was a finalist in the Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Awards.

Miranda works on a broad range of challenges on behalf of those with no recourse to public funds, including claims concerning asylum accommodation, trafficking support and under the Children Act 1989. She was instructed in NN and LP v SSHD [2019] EWHC 1003 (Admin) and has a particular interest in the support provided to victims of trafficking. She has been involved in successful challenges to the level of financial support given to victims who are pregnant or new mothers and to the Home Office's cessation of trafficking support for those housed in initial accommodation.

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