Quality legal representation means Survivors are successfully protected and able to rebuild their lives in the UK.
Legal representation, fairness and equality is at the heart of everything we do. It’s the only way we can ensure long term safety and wellbeing for people who are vulnerable.
At Asylum Aid, we know that Legal Services are stretched. The Legal Aid Agency ultimately puts restrictions on the amount of time our Solicitors can spend on complex asylum and statelessness cases. We know that to protect our clients properly we have to spend more than is covered by our Legal Aid contract. That’s why we deliver extra funding to ensure that we can provide a service that delivers protection where it is most needed.
Unaccompanied minors and Survivors of trafficking, torture and gender-based violence’s cases are incredibly complex. This extra funding gives us time. Time is vitality important because it means that Survivors are treated as a whole person, not just another number.
We have time to liaise with other services, to talk to social services and can take the time to accompany clients when they have appointments. We take the space to understand their whole history, bearing witness to their experience.
Lien is a Vietnamese Survivor of trafficking. We helped her make a new asylum claim and reconsidered as a victim of trafficking.
Lien had suffered appalling trafficking, torture and domestic violence in Vietnam, was then sold into prostitution by her ex-partner and at the same time forced to abandon her child. Lien was trafficked throughout a number of countries, and finally brought to the UK. Lien eventually escaped her traffickers, discovered she was pregnant, and gave birth in the UK. Due to poor legal representation she was not granted asylum nor recognised as a Survivor of trafficking when she first made her claim.
To Lien this felt like additional torture. At Asylum Aid, we took on her case five years ago and after years of complex and dedicated work, she was accepted as a victim of trafficking. Lien and her young child were granted refugee status in late 2020. She continues to search for her now grown up child in Vietnam. She has stated the legal work and support from Asylum Aid changed her life since it gave her the chance to tell her story.
Asylum Aid changed my life, you gave me the chance to tell my story.