It is impossible for a person to recover from torture if they are living in fear of being sent back to their torturers. Being allowed to stay in the UK (getting status) can give torture survivors the safety and stability they need to rebuild their lives.
Getting status, such as refugee status or leave to remain, can often take years. People usually need a lawyer specialising in immigration and asylum.
People applying for status are generally not allowed to work or claim benefits like Universal Credit. This can mean people don’t have enough money to eat or a safe place to sleep.
Sometimes torture survivors are locked up in immigration detention centres. Occasionally the government wrongfully remove people from the UK.
Our Legal and Welfare Team can help people who are having therapy with us tackle these problems.
In reality, I spent the first year looking at underground maps, drawing and connecting grids of lines between refugee centres, the Home Office, solicitors, tube stations and ever-changing addresses in bad-smelling hostels.
Our lawyers and legal team can help people in therapy with us:
- Find a lawyer to take on their asylum claim
- Understand and navigate the asylum system
- Get released from immigration detention
Our welfare staff can help people in therapy with us with issues such as:
- Asylum support payments and welfare
- Health and social care
- Other practical help, including finding a lawyer for support with welfare issues
£3 could help a survivor travel to a medical assessment
£20 could buy seeds for one of our gardening groups
£50 could fund a survivor’s first therapy session