A heartfelt documentary about Lawand, a six-year-old profoundly deaf boy from Iraq, who the Home Office tried to deport, is screening now.
Lawand was represented by Gráinne Mellon, of the Garden Court Chambers Immigration Team.
Lawand Hamadamin was born profoundly deaf and had limited exposure to language since birth. He arrived in the UK in a traumatised state after fleeing his home in Northern Iraq with his family, travelling by boat to Greece and living for a year in a camp in Dunkirk, where his cochlear implant was broken, meaning he lived for a period of time in a completely silent world with no means of communication. His final journey to the UK involved travelling for over 10 hours in darkness in a lorry from France.
Since his arrival, Lawand enrolled at the Royal School for the Deaf in Derby where, for the first time, he learnt how to communicate. Documentary makers from Pulse Films filmed Lawand and his family over four years, detailing their lives in the UK as refugees and their struggles with the Home Office attempting to remove the family.
Gráinne acted for Lawand in urgent judicial review proceedings challenging his removal from the UK and the decision to certify his asylum claim. Gráinne worked closely with experts including in language and communication, child psychology/psychiatry, educational psychology- as well as the brilliant community at his deaf specialist primary school.
Lawand now finally has leave to remain in the UK.
'Name Me Lawand' tells Lawand's inspiring story and is screening across the country until 2 September 2023. Click here to purchase tickets to a screening near you.
Gráinne is currently shortlisted in The Legal 500 Bar Awards 2023 for Public Law Junior of the Year for her inspiring work in this area.