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Faced with closure, RMJ turns to public

Is asking people to join the campaign to save it
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4th June 2010: Just over two days after the Archbishop of Canterbury sought government intervention to save the Refugee and Migrant Justice (RMJ) from imminent closure due to delays in payment for its legal aid work, the organisation is seeking public support.

The RMJ has asked all concerned about `the future of legal representation for the most vulnerable’ to join the campaign to save it from closure.

If you want information on the campaign, or wish to know how you assist in the matter, you can get in touch with Kathleen Commons: 020 7780 3271/07872 161 271.

An email can also be sent to: [email protected] You can also download a template letter and send it to: The Secretary of State for Justice, Kenneth Clarke, Ministry of Justice, 102 Petty France, London SW1H 0AL.
Or email it to: [email protected], marked for the attention of Kenneth Clarke MP.

The RMJ also is also asking people to copy the letter to The Minister for Immigration, Damian Green MP by writing to: [email protected]

You can also like to copy the letter to your local MP, who you can find on TheyWorkForYou.com. You can also join the campaign on Facebook and Twitter.

The RMJ had earlier alleged the asylum system was facing chaos and cash crisis due to delays in the release of legal aid. In some cases, the delay was up to two years.

The organisation, the UK’s largest provider of free legal advice to asylum seekers, said a substantial proportion of legal aid was paid upon case completion.

The charity, representing people fleeing persecution from countries including Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran and Zimbabwe, added the delays in payment up to two years was exposing to risk victims of trafficking and 900 unaccompanied children. The charity added it took on 11,000 new clients last year

Chief executive Caroline Slocock said RMJ was not asking for new money, it was simply seeking prompt payment of legal aid for the work it has carried out.

Slocock said charities like theirs were important to Prime Minister David Cameron’s Big Society and could not wait for up to two years for payment, as the Home Office processed the cases.

Slocock said the current legal aid payment system on asylum and immigration was even putting justice at risk, adding they hoped the government would reconsider and agree to take a genuinely fundamental look at legal aid in this area.

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