We are living in a ferociously hostile climate for asylum seekers and refugees. Restrictive legislation as well as cuts in legal aid have made life for those claiming asylum or seeking bail from immigration detention centres increasingly precarious. There are large numbers of people awaiting decisions on fresh asylum claims who are refused permission to work whilst also being denied benefits. Such people find themselves destitute with devastating effects on their mental or physical health.
Hackney Migrants Centre has been running for 9 years and is now inundated with people who have nowhere else to turn. Every week visitors are turned away. It is clear that more support of this kind is urgently needed.
New Unity (www.new-unity.org) is proposing to offer service for migrants one afternoon a week at 277A Upper Street (N1 2TZ). There may be scope to expand this into a longer day once funding is available and demand for the service is established.
We currently aim to offer:
- Legal advice on immigration, benefits and housing
- Food and a warm welcome
We could also set out to offer:
- Emergency grants and food bank vouchers
- Mental health support
- Use of laptops and mobile phones
And there are many other services we could offer, for instance:
- Bike provision
- Language classes
- Movement and relaxation sessions
We are inviting agencies working in this area, potential management group members, potential volunteers, supporters and generally interested people to gather for an hour on Friday 24th February to help shape this project and drive it forward to the next stage.
For further information please contact Ally on firstname.lastname@example.org
We would love to see you there!