The 2016 Immigration Act reduced the rights of migrants and refugees, while also deterring those keen to help. A good source of information on the bill and its impact is Migrants’ Rights Networks. Still, there are a number of initiatives offering legal aid to refugees in Britain and across Europe.
In Brighton, the Sussex Migration Law Clinic (facebook), based at the University of Sussex Law School, offers (from September 2018) migration and asylum legal advice on a cost-free basis to any individual who requires advice in this legal field and cannot afford to pay a legal practitioner.
Brighton Voices in Exile (facebook) is a charity working to enable, accompany and support asylum seekers and refugees in Sussex and Surrey, offering destitution support and free immigration and legal advice to asylum seekers and refugees. It is always looking for volunteers to help out locally.
Right to Remain is a UK-based human rights organisation working on migration justice, working with groups and individuals to help them establish the right to remain, campaigning for migration justice, organising workshops and meetings with grass-roots groups and networks, exposing the human impact of unjust immigration laws and policies.
The Refugee Council is a long-established organisation working with refugees and people seeking asylum in the UK. It offers a wide range of practical support and advice throughout the refugees’ journey in the UK.
Freedom from Torture is a nation-wide network focusing on the care, treatment and protection of torture survivors. It has opened a local branch to raise awareness of its work. To help, join or attend the events of the local branch, see their facebook page.
Set up following the EU-Turkey agreement of March 2016 which allows deportations of refugees from the EU back to Turkey, Returnwatch (facebook) is an accessible and practical tool for people after having been forcibly returned to Turkey. It seeks to connect ‘returnees’ with lawyers and human rights NGOs in Turkey, as well as to document the procedures implemented by Turkish authorities. The website is also for third country nationals who are deported from other EU members states to Turkey.