Here are today’s headlines:
SRA review highlights asylum seekers are receiving a generally good service from solicitor
Following concerns raised in independent research on the service solicitors provided to asylum seekers, the SRA’s review on the issue has found that overall immigrants are treated adequately. However, the SRA (Solicitors Regulation Authority) did note that improvements could be made. The report established many instances of good work, although some firms did demonstrate poor practice. In terms of positive service from solicitors, the report outlined that many solicitors built a strong client rapport and tailored legal advice. However, it came to light that some firms failed to clarify legal costs, use appropriate linguistics and had inadequate experience in carrying out appeals – to name a few of the problems. Firms who failed to meet standards, will have further action carried out in regards to improving their service. To help support firms in regards to meeting certain standards, the SRA have published a new guidance on delivering immigration services which includes: cost information, private paying clients, funding options, methods of charging and judicial review. Paul Phillips, SRA’s chief executive says he ‘hope(s) our report and guidance will help firms address those concerns and improve. We will take robust action where necessary and will be monitoring overall progress closely.’ Sourced from LexisNexis. Read more here.
Trade groups warn food prices will rise following Brexit
Food and Drink industry experts say food prices in the UK will rise if the government cannot ensure that EU citizens can work in the UK after Brexit has been enforced. Representatives of renown supermarkets and food/drink manufacturers have published an open letter to the government in the Guardian. The 30 industry bodies who signed the letter included the Food and Drink federation who represent big brands such Marmite, Dove, Birds Eye and Mr Kipling and British Retail Consortium who represent large supermarket chains such as Tesco, Asda and Sainsbury’s. The letter says “workers from the European Union, some of whom are already leaving the UK, play a significant role in delivering affordable and high-quality food and drink.” The letter suggests that any point-based used in the UK to grant immigrants the right to work should place the food and drink supply chain on an equal wavelength to financial services and the automotive sector. In addition, there are claims in the letter that EU workers have already began leaving the UK since the Brexit referendum. Figures say that the UK is facing the most severe labour shortage in 12 years and that EU citizens occupy 90% of jobs in the Food and Drink sector. Read more in The Guardian.
‘I’m not a victim. I’m a survivor.’ Says MP raped at 14 years old
Michelle Thomson brought many of her colleagues to tears in the House of Commons after disclosing her experience of rape at just 14 years old. The Scottish MP spoke during the debate on violence against women, which was in aid of the UN’s International Day for elimination of violence against women. Thompson told the Commons “It was by somebody who was known to me. He had offered to walk me home from a youth event and in those days, everybody walked everywhere. It was quite common to do that. It was early evening. It wasn’t dark. I was wearing – I’m imagining, I’m guessing – jeans and a sweatshirt. He told me he wanted to show me something in a wooded area and at that point, I must admit, I was alarmed. I did have a warning bell – but I overrode that warning bell because I knew him and therefore there was a level of trust in place.’’ Also, speaking during the debate was MP Tracy Brabin who spoke of an attempted rape she experienced during her second year at University. The former Coronation Street actress ‘slept with a knife’ following the ordeal. Prior to the debate, 70 politicians had written to Theresa May asking for the Istanbul Convention – an international agreement which aims to stop violent attacks on women – to be validated in the UK. A report published this week also highlighted that 900 women in the past six years have been killed by men, particularly current or ex partners. Read more in The Telegraph, The Guardian and the BBC.
- ‘Iraq human rights lawyer admits string of misconduct charges’ (The Guardian)
- ‘Terrorism most immediate threat to UK, says MI6’ (BBC News)
- ‘Volkswagen emissions: UK and six other nations face legal action’ (BBC News)
- ‘France tax case: Jerome Cahuzac, ex-budget minister, jailed for fraud’ (BBC News)
- ‘Land con barrister disbarred for dishonesty’ (The Law Gazette)
- ‘Football abuse inquiry: 83 potential suspects identified’ (BBC News)