Immigration work boosted by £10k grant – but campaign for a Suffolk Law Centre goes on

Immigration work boosted by £10k grant – but campaign for a Suffolk Law Centre goes on

 The Access to Justice Foundation (ATJF), which supports legal initiatives that are provided free of charge, has awarded £10,000 to the Suffolk Law Advice Centre, which is run by the Ipswich & Suffolk Council for Racial Equality (ISCRE).

The grant will be used to support the volunteer immigration advice service currently being provided at the Law Advice Centre, through purchasing specialist supervision, probably by Skype from another law centre, some interpreting costs and a couple of additional laptops.

The Suffolk Law Advice Centre at ISCRE offers 30 minutes free legal advice from our fantastic volunteer legal professionals for anyone who lives or works in Suffolk. We now have over 70 solicitors and barristers who give up their time and expertise, to assist those who cannot afford or access legal advice or justice. We provide an average of 44 free sessions each month, reaching many of the vulnerable and disadvantaged communities in Suffolk.

Jon Siddall, ATJF’s chief operating officer said: “the Access to Justice Foundation is pleased to support ISCRE’s important work in providing pro bono services to meet increasing demand for immigration advice in Suffolk.”

Audrey Ludwig, ISCRE’s director of legal services, thanked the Access to Justice Foundation for the grant: “this will make a real difference to our clients as we will be able to provide a higher level of advice and a wider range of services in the future.

“We are also immensely grateful to Angela Cole and Sallie Davies of Immigration Legal Services as they are at the heart of our volunteer immigration law service and without whose hundreds of hours of free legal advice each other, there would be far less support for some of the most vulnerable in our society.”

Audrey was also keen to make it clear that this £10,000 grant is ring-fenced specifically for the provision of immigration services and cannot be included in the money raised for a fully-functioning Suffolk Law Centre.

A Suffolk Law Centre will offer free legal advice as at present, but in addition will be able to deal with casework and representation to people who cannot afford to pay the costs.

The campaign for a Suffolk Law Centre has raised around £9,500 of its £40,000 target to match other sources of support.

“The county needs a law centre as more and more residents find themselves unable to afford the costs of defending their basic rights. We are hopeful that we can hit our target and bring Suffolk into line with most other parts of the country” added Audrey.

Donations by following the link or sending a cheque payable to ISCRE to the charity’s Ipswich office in St Matthews Street, Ipswich.

For more information, please click here.