Join our team: frontline volunteers needed | Who are you calling fat cats? Young Legal Aid Lawyers’ Report Launch 14th March | GMLC at the Renters’ Forum | Black Lawyers Matter Access Day 28th March | Sponsor our runners for free access to justice | Case commentary from a GMLC volunteer
Join our team: frontline volunteers needed
“During my time volunteering at Greater Manchester Law Centre, I got an insight into the fantastic work it’s team does for the local community. It was inspiring to see how issues such as access to justice are campaigned for so passionately and with such professionalism.” – Chris, GMLC Volunteer.
Volunteers work at our premises to assist with the services we offer to the public. We are currently espeically looking for receptionists.
As a reception volunteer you must have at least one day per week to dedicate to working on our premises. This is for a sympathetic and committed individual who can meet and welcome members of the public. Here is a list of some of the tasks:
- Reception and welcome desk, being a friendly face and making visitors feel supported
- Provision of client services, such as signposting, referral and internet research
- Answering telephone calls and email enquiries and transferring them if appropriate to the relevant member of staff or volunteer.
If you would like to find out more about all our services volunteer roles (receptionists, welfare benefits application assistants or welfare benefits case workers) or would like to apply for a role, click here and:
- Download the three role descriptions and consider which one is best for you
- Download and complete the relevant application form
- Send it to the address stated in the application form, and in your cover letter or email, state which role you are applying for.
Who are you calling fat cats? Young Legal Aid Lawyers’ Report
“Our latest study addresses access to the legal profession in the age of austerity, and reveals that there remain significant obstacles to lawyers hoping to work in the legal aid sector which, in our view, can only be overcome with urgent action by the government, regulators and employers”
Read the full article here.
Young Legal Aid Lawyers (YLAL) have conducted research into social mobility and diversity, as summarised here by committee members Oliver Carter, Ronagh Craddock, Rachel Francis, and Siobhan Taylor-Ward.
Siobhan is GMLC’s trainee solicitor as well as YLAL’s vice-chair. We are very lucky to have such a dedicated campaigner for access to justice supporting the next generation of social welfare lawyers.
You can join YLAL for their report launch at 6pm Wednesday 14th March in the Lady Hale building, Salford University, Room G06/7. They will introduce YLAL, describe their findings then open out in an open floor discussion of recommendations and social mobility in the sector more generally. For more details, click here.
GMLC at the Renters’ Forum
We had a good time at Greater Manchester Housing Action‘s Renters’ Forum last week discussing renters’ rights, personal experiences and what can be done. Thank you to our volunteers May, Katrina & Robert for representing GMLC and taking part in the group discussions.
Further thanks to GMHA, Tenants Union UK, Shelter, ACORN renters union, Mustard Tree, JustLife and Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham for supporting the event.
Black Lawyers Matter Access Day 28th March
The University of Manchester is hosting this Access Day as part of their Black Lawyers Matter Programme, Wednesday 28th March, 16:30 – 18:30.
If you are interested in studying Law, or would like to support those who are in their applications, check it out.
The Access Day aims to shed some light on the many options for study within Law, UCAS applications, understanding student finance, and mentoring and graduate opportunities.
GMLC has supported Black Lawyers Matter events in the past and we are committed to supporting the next generation of social welfare lawyers.
Click here for tickets and more information.
Sponsor our runners for free access to justice
We have a team of runners signed up for the Great Manchester Run in May! Kate and Katrina have already set up their JustGiving pages and they are collecting donations.
“GMLC enables the people of Greater Manchester to campaign for change as well as to start to provide access to free and independent legal advice” Read Katrina’s appeal and sponsor her here.
“I am running the 10k GM run on Sunday 20th May to raise money for this cause.” Read Kate’s appeal and sponsor her here.
If you would like to join the running team, find out more here.
Case commentary from a GMLC volunteer
A recent judgment, Barton v Wright Hassall LLP, shows that the courts are as strict on people representing themselves as they are on lawyers when it comes to understanding and following regulations. This raises the issue of access to justice: people who do not have access to expert lawyers are usually held to the same standards as professionals.
Read Robert Povall’s case summary here.
Dates for your diary
- 14/03/2018 – Young Legal Aid Lawyers Social Mobility report launch
- 28/03/2018 – Black Lawyers Matter Access Day
- 20/04/2018 – With Lord Bach: Legal Aid and the Future of Free Access to Justice
- 20/05/2018 – GMLC Fundraising: Greater Manchester Run
4 things you can do to help Greater Manchester Law Centre
- You can donate and/or set up a standing order to help fund our key legal services
- Get involved by either volunteering, becoming a member, a supporter, or if you are an organisation, you can affiliate with us. Go to the Get involved tab on the home page.
- For those of you on Twitter, #whyweneedGMLawCentre or #FreeAccesstoJustice and tell us why GMLC is so important.
- Ask for a letter of support from your local councillor/MP/community organisation/trade union branch and send it in to us.