Windrush Compensation Support Surgeries
In August 2019, United Legal Access started holding Windrush Compensation Support Surgeries at the Pilgrim Centre in Nottingham.
This came about after being approached by one of the senior ministers of the local church, Clive Foster, and being asked to provide legal support to those that the church had come into contact with; people who had been affected by the ‘Windrush Scandal’ and wanted to make applications for compensation to the Windrush Compensation Scheme.
The Windrush Compensation Scheme was set up by the Government in April 2018 to compensate those who had been impacted or suffered loss due to not being able to demonstrate their lawful right to live and work in the UK. Many people affected, were denied access to public services, couldn’t secure or continue in employment, were unable to access housing or remain living in their homes and have suffered emotionally and mentally, because of the Home Office’s hostile environment policy.
As United Legal Access had attended a number of Windrush Roadshows held by the Home Office in Nottingham in 2018 and early 2019 and were planning to provide support in this area, we partnered with the Nottinghamshire Windrush Support Forum to provide legal support.
Due to the success of the surgeries in Nottingham, in February 2020 we started Windrush Compensation Support clinics at the Barbados High Commission in London.
Since starting the work, 47 people have accessed the surgeries and 14 people have successfully completed applications to the Windrush Compensation Scheme after getting settled status; a further 16 people are either waiting on the Home Office’s Windrush Task Force to deliver their settled status or are being supported by United Legal Access to compile more information together to complete their application for compensation.
Despite not being able to meet face to face with those needing assistance, we have been supporting people online via Zoom and other video conferencing platforms, holding online appointments each week. This has allowed us to widen our reach and assist people anywhere in the country online. We have continued the work to ensure that even during the pandemic, people are still having access to justice and legal help.
We have supported people who, by themselves, would not have been able to complete the application form and gather the necessary information to support their claim. There is still so much to do and many more people to reach and through our information sessions and clinics in the community, as well as collaborating with community groups, organisations and law firms, we will reach those who need help and support them through this journey to receive justice for the injustices suffered.
If you need free legal assistance, get in touch now!