It was humbling to be at the Black Cultural Archives (BCA) on Wednesday 9th May 2018 to assist at one of its ‘Windrush’ Immigration Legal Clinics. It was heartbreaking to see the great stress and upset felt by so many Caribbean born British people who have had their lives turned upside down by the government’s hostile environment policy.
That is why I am so grateful to lawyers from the wonderful Faegre Baker Daniels LLP for coming down to Brixton and providing first class triage and legal advice to so many desperate people. A massive thank you to Claire D. Nilson, FBD’s Head of Immigration and Global Mobility; Stephen Llewellyn, Counsel and Head of Pro Bono; Katie Newman, Employment Solicitor; and Hoden Buraleh, Immigration Paralegal.
BCA is still seeking lawyers to assist at the clinics if any other lawyers can spare 3 hours between 5pm and 8pm on a Wednesday or between 10am and 1pm on a Saturday.
May 12th update: Thank you also to immigration barrister Rudolph Spurling from 10KBW Chambers for attending the Black Cultural Archives on a Saturday morning to give advice!
Wonderful to spend time talking with Manjit Gill QC, one of my legal heroes, at a recent drinks reception. Manjit is a legal trailblazer and a major source of inspiration for Black and Minority Ethnic lawyers all over the UK.
Manjit was instrumental in setting up the Discrimination Law Association.
He was also the barrister who persuaded the UK Supreme Court to hand down its groundbreaking judgment on the ‘best interests of the child’ in ZH (Tanzania).
What an honour to be able to spend time with such an esteemed (and busy!) legal pioneer.
I had a great time as a guest on Deja Vu FM, an East London based community radio station, on Thursday the 19th of April 2018, discussing domestic violence, the Windrush generation scandal and the recent spike in London knife crime alongside an author, ethical fashion consultant and a seasoned community organiser. I enjoyed sharing my perspective and demystifying confusing legal issues. You can watch the recording of the show HERE.
I was very pleased to join the Vigil for Justice organised by the Justice Alliance outside the Ministry of Justice on Wednesday the 18th of April 2018. Colleagues from across the legal profession came together to say #TheLawisBroken, #EnoughIsEnough and it’s #Time4Justice. As I move into a new stage of my legal career, I plan to become even more active in campaigning to save our justice system.
I was deeply saddened to learn of the unexpected death of Sir Henry Brooke. In recent months, Sir Henry had become a good friend of Hackney Community Law Centre (HCLC).
I was in regular contact with Sir Henry in the run up to HCLC’s most recent Annual General Meeting (AGM), which was only held in December. Sir Henry praised the HCLC annual report I wrote and, on the day of the AGM, in an email exchange with him to confirm his taxi arrangements, I was pleasantly shocked and surprised to also read the line: “I have just transferred £1,000 gross to (HCLC’s) bank account, with best wishes“.
Sir Henry Brooke was witty, funny, brilliant, kind and clever and cared so much about access to justice for the poor. He also really “got” race equality at the Bar. I so enjoyed reading this excellent blogpost he wrote about the work he carried out as Chair of the Bar’s Race Relations Committee. I wish I had known him then.
HCLC Chair Ian Rathbone has paid tribute to Sir Henry on behalf of the team here.
We will miss Sir Henry Brooke very much.