Category Archives: News

Islington Law Centre is Recruiting

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Asylum & Immigration Solicitor/Senior Caseworker

Salary:           £34,986 to £38,403

Salary is dependent on qualifications and experience. Plus 3% auto enrolment pension contribution, in line with government criteria. 35 hour week, excellent Terms and Conditions.

ISLINGTON LAW CENTRE, one of the largest Law Centres in the country, is seeking to recruit an experienced IAAS Level 2 or above Asylum & Immigration Solicitor/Senior Caseworker.

The successful applicant will join an experienced, creative team of dedicated professionals noted for their high quality provision of specialist legal advice and representation. The team received a Category 1 score for their last Independent Peer Review for the Legal Aid Agency in relation to their Legal Aid casework, and have had a number of successes in achieving notable outcomes for clients.

Experience of working to Legal Aid Contract processes is essential.

Closing date 5pm Wednesday 28th August 2019

Interviews Monday 9th September 2019

You can download the relevant documents below, or email recruitment@islingtonlaw.org.uk:

Job Description

Person Specification

Application Form

Equal Opportunities monitoring form

Islington Law Centre is Recruiting

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Debt/Money Advice Solicitor or Experienced Caseworker

Salary £38,404 – £41,466 Dependent on Qualifications and/or Experience

Plus 3% pension, excellent Terms and Conditions

Full Time 35 hours per week

Islington Law Centre, a dynamic charity providing free legal advice and support to local communities and based in the London Borough of Islington, is seeking an experienced solicitor or caseworker to provide an effective specialist debt/money advice service covering the full range of debt advice, including representation. The successful candidate will work alongside the Welfare Benefits, Housing and Immigration & Asylum legal advice services offered by Islington Law Centre to local people.

The successful applicant must have experience at Supervisor Level and be an Intermediary registered by the Insolvency Service to input Debt Relief Orders.

Closing date 5pm Monday 15th July 2019

Interviews Friday 19th July 2019

You can download the relevant documents below, or email recruitment@islingtonlaw.org.uk:

Information for Applicants

Job Description

Person Specification

Application Form

Equal Opportunities monitoring form

Goodbye and hello…

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After 18 years at Islington Law Centre, Ruth Hayes will be leaving at the end of April 2019.  Over this time, she has seen the services develop and expand, and during her time here the Law Centre has grown from 18 staff to 33, with an increase in the level of services and the range of legal assistance provided.   Stuart Hearne will take over as Director with effect from May 2019.

Islington Law Centre client interview with Open Democracy

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We are very pleased to have been able to work with Open Democracy to highlight the difficulties many people face in getting legal  advice as a result of the cuts to the Legal Aid system in 2013.  The Law Centre acts for a range of local people, including those who have been caught up with the issues affecting the Windrush Generation.  Eleanor spoke to the Open Democracy team about her case, and how the Law Centre had been able to help her to ensure that she was able to obtain justice.

You can see the interview in the link below, and also read more about the way in which the cuts to Legal Aid have affected people.  There are also suggested actions you can take to help highlight how important legal aid is to people.

Eleanor sums this up when she says “Legal Aid is an invaluable asset to anyone who is not privileged”  – no-one knows when they might face a legal issue,  and we want to ensure that there are enough legal aid lawyers to help people when they do.”

The link is here:-  https://www.opendemocracy.net/openjustice/satbir-singh-charlotte-threipland/windrush-toxic-combination

Legal Aid brought back into scope for separated and unaccompanied children in immigration cases following legal challenge brought by Islington Law Centre

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“Immigration law is complex and fast moving. Combined with the hostile environment which we have seen wreak such havoc on the Windrush generation, the thought of children navigating the system alone was terrifying. Sometimes as a lawyer you start with a gut instinct that something is wrong, and you build a case around it. After 5 years of hard work it is a relief to see that instinct vindicated.”
Roopa Tanna – Solicitor, Islington Law Centre

Islington Law Centre and MiCLU represented The Children’s Society in their 5-year long legal challenge to the government’s 2013 removal of legal aid for children’s immigration cases. In a Ministerial Statement in the House of Commons on 12 July 2018 Lucy Frazer (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Justice) announced that changes will now be made to reinstate legal aid as of right for unaccompanied or separated migrant children requiring legal advice and representation in relation to immigration matters. This is the first time that the Lord Chancellor has exercised his powers to reinstate civil legal aid for a specified group.

In the face of the hostile environment and cut to services this is an important safeguard for children who face complex laws affecting every aspect of their lives. Children without a parent to advocate for them are particularly vulnerable, and, as Windrush has shown us, the effects of being unable to assert rights and entitlements in relation to immigration entitlements can last a lifetime.

“The role of a Law Centre is to ensure equality of access to justice to all members of our community. In the face of cuts to our services we nevertheless decided to run this case because of the fundamental issues of access to justice involved.”
Stuart Hearne – Co-Director, Islington Law Centre

We are immensely proud of our legal team. In particular we would like to thank Paul Bowen QC, Michelle Knorr, Alison Pickup, Oliver Jones, and Zoe Harper. We would also like to thank all those who supported the case by providing evidence of the impact that loss of legal aid has had on separated and unaccompanied migrant children.

“At MiCLU our aim is for every migrant child to have their voice heard in legal proceedings affecting them. We are so proud of our legal team for bringing this case so that unaccompanied and separated migrant children have access to a lawyer to help them to be fully involved in issues so key to their future.”
Anna Skehan – Solicitor, MiCLU

London Legal Walk

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Islington Law Centre is again taking part in the London Legal Support Trust’s Annual London Legal Walk on 21 May 2018. This year the walk is the biggest ever, with over 12,000 people walking through London to raise much needed funds for legal advice agencies.

Our team includes staff, trustees and volunteers and we are extremely grateful to all of our sponsors. All the money raised by our team goes directly to our work, and we are delighted that 3 corporate firms are also raising money for the Law Centre. If you would like to support us in this way, you can donate online here. Thank you!

New Head of Legal Practice joins Islington Law Centre

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Islington Law Centre is delighted to have appointed Stuart Hearne as the new Head of Legal Practice. Stuart is a solicitor with over 20 years’ experience. He has joined us from Shelter where he was managing and overseeing all the legal aid work across 11 Shelter offices in the south of England including the three London offices. Prior to working at Shelter, Stuart was the Director of Cambridge House Law Centre in Camberwell. Stuart also has a background in private practice having been a partner at Christian Khan solicitors where he was Head of Housing and Immigration. He comes with a wealth of casework experience having run cases at all levels including the Administrative Court, the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. Stuart is also an experienced trainer with particular experience of training around case management.

Head of Legal Practice – Recruitment

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The Law Centre is delighted to be seeking to appoint to a new post, the Head of Legal Practice.  The post holder will be an experienced practitioner, and will play a key role in developing our work over the coming period.  This is an exciting opportunity to join our team.  Full details are available here – the deadline for the receipt of completed applications is  Wednesday 8th November 2017  at 5pm.

ILC Covering Letter October 2017 HOLP

Islington Law Centre HOLP Advert October 2017

ILC Job Description Co Director Head of Legal Practice FINAL

ILC Person Specification Co Director HOLP October 2017

Information for Applicants October 2017 – HOLP

ILC Application Form October 2017 HOLP

Trustees

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The Law Centre is seeking to add to its Board of Directors/Charity Trustees. Ideally we want 3 new members with experience in finance, Legal Aid, and Human Resources, or a combination of skills.   In particular we are seeking people with Not for Profit Board/Trustee experience of Governance of a mid-size organisation with a complex funding base and a large staff team.

If this interests you and you have time to give we would love to hear from you. If you would like more information on the commitment required please contact the Centre Director, Ruth Hayes, ruthh@islingtonlaw.org.uk in the first instance. If you prefer we can send you and Information Pack and Application Form in advance.

Opportunities to join us!

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Islington Law Centre is delighted that our Migrant and Refugee Children’s Legal Unit (MiCLU) has been chosen as a host agency for the Justice First Fellowship programme.  This means that we are able to offer a training contract within the team, with the opportunity to qualify as a solicitor, and to specialise in work with children and young people.  This post is funded by the Legal Education Foundation and by BBC Children in Need.

MiCLU is a specialist policy and legal hub committed to promoting and protecting the rights of refugee and migrant children and young people. We achieve this using a unique combination of direct legal representation, strategic litigation, policy and influencing work, advocacy and legal education.

The programme aims to develop a new cohort of social welfare lawyers who have a strong commitment to access to justice, and the successful candidate will have the opportunity to work on their own project, as well as on our well established programme of activities.

Further details and the online application are available via the Legal Education Foundation website, here:-  Applications are through the Justice First Fellowship: https://jff.thelegaleducationfoundation.org/how-to-apply/application-form/. The deadline for applications is 18 September 2017.

For general enquiries or to make an appointment: Call 020 7288 7630