Wednesday 17 May 2017

GLC Principal Solicitor interview in The Herald, 17 May 2017

Below is an extract of an interview with our Principal Solicitor, Mike Dailly, with The Herald's personal finance editor and business correspondent, Margaret Taylor, published on the 17 May 2017. A link to the full article is reproduced below.
IT IS somewhat fitting that the converted cells of Govan’s old Orkney Street Police Station are now home to Govan Law Centre, given that the man who runs it - principal solicitor Mike Dailly - takes no prisoners when it comes to fighting for justice.  When you consider the type of work he and his colleagues do - defending mortgage repossessions, fighting eviction cases, advising on money matters and welfare rights - you can understand why. With little or no voice of their own, Mr Dailly’s clients depend on him to fight their corner for them. “Our work is about enforcing people’s rights and enabling them to access those rights and access justice,” Mr Dailly said.(read the article on The Herald's online site here).


Thursday 11 May 2017

Govan Law Centre to launch Glasgow Asylum Seekers Project

Dee Flanigan, Glasgow Asylum
Seekers Project solicitor
Govan Law Centre (GLC) is delighted to announce that with the support of The AB Charitable Trust we are now in a position to launch a Glasgow Asylum Seekers Project with a particular focus on housing, health and the living conditions of asylum seekers and their families and children in Glasgow.

There are approximately 10,000 refugee and asylum seekers in Glasgow. Asylum seekers have no right to work, cannot access the benefit system and rely on public services. Failed asylum seekers are exploited and are often living in very poor conditions. Many are destitute. 
Research by both the Glasgow Caledonian University and Scottish Refugee Council show 96% of refugees experience homelessness at some point after receiving their status. Many slip through the net and spend time ‘sofa-surfing’ and rough sleeping. The research also showed that half are unhappy with their living conditions. Lack of basic knowledge of services, rights and opportunities means clients do not know what to do to improve their situation.

GLC's Principal Solicitor, Mike Dailly said: "We are convinced there is much unmet legal need amongst asylum seekers and refugees in Glasgow. We will use the law to inform, enforce rights and opportunities, and ensure full access to public services to improve the lives of refugees and asylum seekers in Glasgow".  

GLC's Glasgow Asylum Seekers Project will work with a number of partner organisations, including the Asylum Seeker Housing project.  Our project will be headed up by Dee Flanigan, solicitor at Govan Law Centre. 

Sunday 7 May 2017

Significant increase in Govan Law Centre's casework in the last financial year

Govan Law Centre's (GLC) Annual Monitoring Report to Glasgow City Council has revealed a significant increase in legal casework, and gains secured for clients across Glasgow's South and North East communities.  The Annual Monitoring Report is a requirement of the local authority's Integrated Grant Fund. GCC funding to GLC represents almost one quarter of the law centre's income.

GLC believes not only do we provide a service four times the size of that vital investment, but much greater added value when the quality and specialist nature of legal work is considered, together with the law centre's work in the fields of social policy and best practice, law reform, public interest litigation and test case work. Key statistics and highlights from our legal work in Glasgow during 2016/17 include:

⧫  A 20% increase in "type 3" cases (cases which involve sheriff court or tribunal representation) from 798 cases in the last financial year to almost 1,000 this year

⧫  1,353 new clients

⧫  Resolved or prevented homelessness for 600 clients in Glasgow, and issued 1,200 "section 11" prevention of homelessness contacts

⧫  Improved living conditions for 292 clients, and ensured better affordability in living costs for 138 clients

⧫  A 10% increase in the City-wide housing debt handled by GLC's solicitors and caseworkers from almost £5.5m in the last financial year to almost £6 million pounds this year

⧫  Secured direct financial gains for clients in the sum of £412,747

⧫  GLC gave evidence to the Scottish Parliament's Economy Committee and helped persuade the Scottish Government to withdraw the draft Bankruptcy Fees (Scotland) Order 2017, which would have seen some fees against homeowners increase by almost 200%.

⧫  In addition to working with the Scottish Bar in cases, we also provided an in-house Solicitor Advocate service for clients undertaking urgent petitions for judicial reviews in the Court of Session against HMRC, the Scottish Government and local authorities, together with actions for suspension and interdict. We also undertook in-house appeals to the Inner House of the Court of Session in relation to issues concerning fair rents, and housing grants.

⧫  We established a pilot Women's Rights legal service in partnership with Tea in the Pot

⧫  We established and funded a Scottish Personal Insolvency Law Unit

⧫  We launched a City-wide dedicated Private Rented Tenants' Project for Glasgow with almost half a million pounds in funding from the Big Lottery Fund's Investing in Communities Programme