Xenatisch

Freedom of speech comes with no strings attached…

Empty… again!

Iran’s selected president speaking for the chairs in the United Nations.

Stop the execution of Troy Davis

Thank you for signing our petition to save Troy Davis! In just a few days, we have collected over 150,000 signatures and we are getting close to our goal of 200,000. On Monday, this petition with every individual signature will be delivered to the Georgia State Board of Pardons and Paroles before they sit down for Troy’s clemency hearing.We only have 24 hours left to collect these final signatures, so please share this petition with your friends!

http://signon.org/sign/stop-the-execution-of?source=s.em.cr&r_by=906755&mailing_id=621

We will continue to keep you updated as Troy’s appeal for clemency is heard.

Also, please consider:

My Complaint to BBC Persian regarding their LGBT Programme

4 September 2011

Sadegh Saba
Persian Section, World Services
British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)

Bush House, Strand
London WC2B 4PH
United Kingdom

RE: BBC World Services – Persian Programme, Pargar, entitled: Homosexuality, adventitious or genetical? 

Dear Mr Saba, et al.

Following an expression of my appreciation towards the cause of this programme, and indeed the depth of it, I would like to hereby highlight and duly criticise several element that, in accordance with my perspective, and where possible, explicitly based upon references, are not either based on reality, are deluded, or are otherwise with considerable lack of credibility to show in a public media.

Most importantly, some of the arguments underlined throughout this programme were neither explicitly nor implicitly based upon any credible source. The most important one amongst them could be initiated as where a research conducted in Russia regarding homosexuality was cited, in which a number of 50 children were detached from the society and held in an isolated environment within which they were taught about and adapted towards homosexual lifestyles. This assertion could be strongly challenged as follows:

  1. Russian Federation’s international Human Rights obligations require the government to provide the citizens with reasonable services. Russia is also a party to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), and is therefore obliged to ensure that the individuals are not being rendered vulnerable to the violation of other human rights. This is a United Nations treaty and was signed on 18th of March 1968, and ratified on 16th of October 1973. [1]
  2. Additionally, I would like to further emphasise the international obligations towards Russia regarding the Children’s Rights. Russian Federation is, with no reservations, a party to the International Convention on the Rights of the Child and is therefore obliged to observe its articles. The relevant obligations are as follows: [2]

Article 23 – Section 4: States Parties shall promote, in the spirit of international cooperation, the exchange of appropriate information in the field of preventive health care and of medical, psychological and functional treatment of disabled children, including dissemination of and access to information concerning methods of rehabilitation, education and vocational services, with the aim of enabling States Parties to improve their capabilities and skills and to widen their experience in these areas. In this regard, particular account shall be taken of the needs of developing countries.

Article 24 – Section 2, Part B: To ensure the provision of necessary medical assistance and health care to all children with emphasis on the development of primary health care.

Article 39: States Parties shall take all appropriate measures to promote physical and psychological recovery and social reintegration of a child victim of: any form of neglect, exploitation, or abuse; torture or any other form of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment; or armed conflicts. Such recovery and reintegration shall take place in an environment which fosters the health, self-respect and dignity of the child.

I therefore reject the possibility of conduction of any such research within Russian Federation following which the results have been made public and found credible by the international medical and psychological communities. This claim is therefore academically dismissible and cannot be referenced.

Thereafter, I would like to further demonstrate the followings arguments in dismissal of another claim upon the relevancy of being risen in a homosexual environment and becoming a homosexual as a result.

Sullivan has concluded as follows in his research:

The review concludes that there is no evidence of confused gender identity amongst children but that more research is needed especially on adoptive families.” [3]

It is supplementary demonstrable, as indicated by the French organisation APGL (Association des Parents et futurs parents Gays et Lesbians: Association of Gay and Lesbian Parents and future parents), that:

Overall … results of research to date suggest that children of lesbian and gay parents have normal relationships with peers and that their relationships with adults of both sexes are also satisfactory.

…Not a single study has found children of gay or lesbian parents to be disadvantaged in any significant respect relative to children of heterosexual parents. Indeed, the evidence to date suggests that home environments provided by gay and lesbian parents are as likely as those provided by heterosexual parents to support and enable children’s psychosocial growth.” [4]

The Scottish government therefore concludes: “The [above-indicated] review further argues that research suggests that children of lesbian mothers develop patterns of gender-role behaviour that are much like those of other children.”  [4]

I consider it appropriate to also additionally point out the following argument in support of my statement. The American Academy of Paediatrics has issued a report in which it is concluded:

A growing body of scientific literature demonstrates that children who grow up with 1 or 2 gay and/or lesbian parents fare as well in emotional, cognitive, social, and sexual functioning as do children whose parents are heterosexual. Children’s optimal development seems to be influenced more by the nature of the relationships and interactions within the family unit than by the particular structural form it takes.” [6]

Considering the fact that the demonstration of observations and ideas were mainly based upon a socio-psychological perspective, the above statements arguably challenge the credibility of them.

There was another indication of an unproven hypothesis as one of your guest speakers stressed that the fingers of the homosexual individuals are different from those heterosexual. It is to be noted that this hypothesis has never been the theory of a thesis and thus has never transformed to a proven fact. It is therefore an inappropriate subject to mention without indicating the surrounding details. It might well harm the society and result in individuals talking prejudicial and detrimental actions towards the children meeting such unproven criteria.

Furthermore, it was claimed that homosexuality is diagnosed as transsexuality in Iran. Article 3.10.2 of the United Kingdom Border Agency (UKBA) operational guidance note on Iran indicates the following:

Sexual issues are considered taboo in Iran, and there is widespread misinformation about homosexuality. Gay men and lesbian face harassment, ostracism and abuse from their families, friends and acquaintances. The homophobic culture that rules Iranian society puts enormous pressure on homosexuals. Societal as well as official scrutiny of ‘deviant’ behaviour is widespread in Iran, with neighbours and even family members enlisted to support the state’s moral policing. Many Iranians consider homosexuality a disease or sickness. For some, homosexuality among men is synonymous with paedophilia. As a result, gay men and lesbians in Iran cannot be open about their sexual orientation. Many suppress their feelings. There are also reports of sex-change operations or hormone therapy to escape persecution. Some also face arranged or forced marriages insisted on by their families.” [7]

It is also significant to additionally notice the article 3.10.6 of the same guidance which indicates:

The government in Iran provided grants of as much as 45 million Rials (£2,700) and loans of as much as 55 million Rials (£3,000) for transgender persons willing to undergo gender reassignment surgery. Human rights activists and NGOs reported that some members of the gay, lesbian and bisexual community have been pressured to undergo gender reassignment surgery to avoid legal and social persecutions in the country. In September 2009 international newspapers reported that a family court allowed the first transgender marriage between a woman and her male partner, previously also a woman.” [8]

Duly, I would hereby dismiss this claim as follows:

It is evident within the above statement that the corresponding authorities have in fact neither demonstrated nor indicated homosexuality to be the same as transsexuality. In order to undertake a transgender reassignment surgery in Iran for a transexual individual, and to be accordingly entitled to the public funds for it, it is obligatory to undergo and sustain various medical and psychological tests following which a permission of the national forensics organisation must be issued as a final green-light.

In due course, I would like to sincerely request the producers of such sensitive programmes, which are meant to redefine or otherwise refine the already-damaged and unwilling-to-change cultures, to choose their invitees more carefully and examine the credibility of their claims more accurately. Some of the claims made within this programme, such as those regarding the children or questioning the reliability of various academically recognised researches, without providing immediate proofs, are most unacceptable, partially offensive, humiliating and are arguably on a hearsay basis. The World Services of the British Broadcasting Corporation is expected to take a greater care of its productions and prevent its programmes to spread false or inaccurate information.

Ultimately, I find it important to indicate that sexuality (sexual orientation) and gender identity are two different concepts. Based upon some studies, sexuality may be considered as a part of the gender identity of an individual within which, however, it does not necessarily play the most important role.

It is noteworthy that parts of this programme contained strong language and inappropriate contents for unsupervised children, and was therefore required to observe an age-limit policy of over 12 with parental guardianship. Failure to accomplish this observation breached the United Kingdom Child Safeguarding Act 2004.

As a recommendation, I believe that it would be more appropriate to have invitees with relevant issues present within the programme as well (i.e. panel 2). This could be interpreted as the members of the LGBT community (not the activists) and those with relevant alma mater studies, whose questions could be found more challenging and meaningful. Moreover, it would be more constructive to further manage the discussions and avoid personal arguments within social-scientific shows as they might yield negative impacts upon the comprehension and apprehension of the audiences. I would like to additionally endorse that in order to contemplate and asses issues relevant to genetics or sociology, it would be a better concept to invite those with authority and academic background within the relevant subject areas. On the other hand, more appropriate subjects could be discussed with those invitees who are particularly specialised in advocacy or activism of the debating topics.

I would like to therefore request your administration to read this letter within the same programme, and have it displayed upon the correlated part of the website.

I trust this is in order and look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely,

Pouria Hadjibagheri
Political, Civil and LGBT Rights Activist
Member of the United Nations Association of the UK
Member of Amnesty International and Reporters without Borders
Co-Founder and Trustee of Persian Gay and Lesbian Liberators Organisation of the UK

CC:
British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) – Department of Complaints, Darlington – UK.
BBC World Services Complaints – Bush House, London – UK.

REFERENCES:

1 United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 993, p. 3.

2 United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 1577, p. 3.

3 Sullivan, A., (1995). Issues In Gay and Lesbian Adoption: Proceedings of the Fourth Annual Peirce-Warwick Adoption Symposium, Washington, DC: Child Welfare League of America. – p. 26.

4 Also consider: Patterson et al. (1996)

5 Selman, P. et al. (2004). Website of the Scottish Government, Annex B: Research on Same-Sex Parenting [ONLINE – Accessed: 3 September 2011]

6 Perrin, C. et al (2002). Technical Report; Co-parent or second-parent adoption by same-sex parents, Pediatrics, Vol. 109 no 2.

ALSO CONSIDER: Hicks, S. and McDermott, J. (Eds.) (1999) Lesbian and Gay Fostering and Adoption: Extraordinary Yet Ordinary, Jessica Kingsley Publishers, London.

ALSO CONSIDER: Strah D. (2003) Gay Dads, New York: Putnam.

7 Government of the United Kingdom – Home Office’s UKBA Operational Guidance Note on Iran: Iran OGN v6 – Issued 15 March 2011. Article 3.10.2.

8 Government of the United Kingdom – Home Office’s UKBA Operational Guidance Note on Iran: Iran OGN v6 – Issued 15 March 2011. Article 3.10.6.

Text of my 30/August/2011 Speech on LGBT Rights

This is the speech I’m going to give in Sheffield on 30th of August 2011, on the occasion of the premier of an LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transexual) Documentary film about the Life of the African Homosexuals. I have been invited to give this speech as an LGBT Rights activist.

I would like to hereby thank my very dear friend, Ali, who kindly and enthusiastically did me a favour and wrote this speech in Persian. Ali is a writer as well as an LGBT Rights activist.

I intend post the Persian version of the speech in the future, too.

————————————————————

Written by: Ali J.U.N

Translated from Persian by: Pouria Hadjibagheri

————————————————————

No one knows me. I heard the whispers of the night, who was saying that the sun had asked the spirit of wisdom: “Who is it?” Responded the spirit of wisdom, after a short silence: A light greater than light! The one who enlightened the sun by coming over, a light that didn’t left out the moon, too. Extended the meaning of paradise on earth in a way that symbolised the beauty of the paradise of heavens, the one known by the angels.

I am a homosexual man!

Freedom, is the backbone of the bond we are passing to our next generations. The bond of the route we have passed through, a route that was worth it.

I seek for freedom.

I admire freedom; because it is being admired by those who weren’t wanted by anyone themselves, while claiming freedom for everyone! Those who existed without having someone to back them up. Those who were looking for cures for their scars, without a having a balm that had been provided to them by others. Those who were composing their love without having words that were of meanings to the others, those who were… suffering! Those who are suffering without having others noticing that they are trying to set free a world that does not include them. I admire freedom, because they queers seek for it.

Freedom creates the future, and the futures will include the queers. The future always includes the knowledgeable. Those who look into themselves to find out “Why have I become like this?”. The futures belongs to those who look in the past to find out who has been like them, and look into present to find out who is like them now, and look into future, that we want to be a part of the future, too. We, the homosexuals, are always standing on a bridge. A bridge that’s entitled “Self-Inquiry”. A question that those great names like Rumi have reached for its answers: “Where have I come from, what for? Where am I going to? Oh reveal my land.”

Now, standing upon ‘our’ feet, we are willing to construct a river to connect ourselves to our self. In a boisterous, tall future, the one who knows where has he been standing throughout the history, the one who knows that he doesn’t exists, but he must, the one who knows that he must build the future with his own hands, and for that he must build himself, first; the one who not only knows, but pushes himself forward! how could one say that in the future, he shan’t be standing tall?

The one who asks from deep himself, with all his being: “Who on earth am I?”. If he does not deserve to hold the flag of victory, then what does he deserve? Those whose identities are tied with their proofs of existence, and their existence is fastened to the love they claim for everyone!

And others, the spirit of wisdom pictured as such: those who praise their idiocy, in a way that the knowledgeable praise their knowledge. Those who demand for a dreadful suffering house that has been painted by the shining blood of those hung from gallows and seek for freedom by calumniating the homosexuals.

This is by far more difficult than witchery. Witchery can be beaten by the lynx eyes of science. Though, calumniation has not even been beaten by the peacemakers of the history. And how many are there that have been subject to calumniation throughout their lives. Though, from the craze of reaching for freedom, they never polluted their hearts with hatred. They are now looking for your headlines, ladies and gentlemen. Oh, by the way, what’s up about “freedom”?

Do you know of the scars that getting rid of them is a never-ending hope for us?

Oh, by the way, have you any idea of the sour, intense look of a mother who humiliates him for not being like other children, for being a “homosexual”?

Do you know of someone who, neither in the streets and lanes of a city, nor in the maze of the foliated books, nor in the long trend of the history, can he find a single song of what is shouting deep inside him?

Do you know of the pain of “I love you” phrases that exist, but not noticed? When you cannot describe them because they don’t know and they don’t understand, because they don’t see!

Do you have any idea that when the verification and endorsement of a teenager’s parents about his emotional identity is not alongside him, how much his humanity is killed within the moments of his youth?

Did you know of the tears of the children who have come from beyond the lines of history, but they have no idea who they actually are? and there is no one to tell them, that, hey, you are not limited to your sexuality!

Did you know, that even YOU don’t know!

Because you have never seen it, you have never suffered from all those pains, and you expect to hear and accept that: indeed, those who see the gallows tied with their existence and destiny, actually do suffer.

Are you aware of the life that’s been spent in loneliness and silence, without any confabulation and sympathy of the coevals? Of the years spent inside praying-circles hoping for a cure? The frequently asked question of “Why has god created me like this?”. A life that was worth the same as the life that “YOU” have spent, and will be spending, within which you’ve never doubted upon that most basic joy of humanity, love!

Have you ever been informed of the “religious beliefs”, those that probably make no difference in your very lives, are the most sensitive and innermost beliefs of the people whose cultures are tied with religions. The beliefs through which they marry, the give birth, they name their children, and they spend their entire lives with! These are the beliefs that also exist deep within the homosexuals rising from those cultures, too. Outside, he is considered as a damned inferno; and inside, is where he cannot believe that “Yes, I also have the right to live…”.

I am talking about getting rid of a pain that you, ladies and gentlemen, never realise or perceive. The pain of not being noticed, neither at the extensive trend of humanity as a human being, nor at the mirror of the society as a member, nor at the eyes of the a pair of lovely parents, who are being loved even by the poems and the sonnets; as sons and daughters, who deserve to be loved as they are.

We seek freedom within the mirror of time, in getting and get involved in creating better days, within which we share the same wish as you do!

Support us, hence if the homosexuals are unable to reveal the value of their state of humanity, if they are being shredded and neglected within the taboos tied with their sexuality; they become able to breathe the air of freedom, and within their remaining breaths, reveal themselves within the values of humanity, throughout which they leave their heritage for the future generations, perhaps its rainbow brings in “an identity” for those sharing the same pain.

Amin’s Campaign

A Pouria Hadjibagheri Foundation Campaign.

English

Urgent Appeal for Support!
We have reported about this in the past. The young man then lived in the Netherlands. For further information please refer to the sample letter.
It’s an emergency! We ask for urgent support upon this action. It’s about a human life!

Français

Appel urgent pour le soutien!
Nous avons signalé à ce sujet avant. Le jeune a ensuite vécu aux Pays-Bas. Pour plus d’informations s’il vous plaît se référer également à la lettre de l’échantillon.
C’est une urgence! Nous demandons un soutien urgent de cette action. Il s’agit d’une vie humaine!

Deutsch

Dringender Appel zur Unterstützung!
Wir haben vor einigen Wochen bereits hierüber berichtet. Der junge wohnte damals in den Niederlanden. Mehr Infos bitte auch dem Musterbrief entnehmen.
Es ist ein Notfall! Wir bitten um dringende Unterstützung dieser Aktion. Es geht um ein Menschenleben!

Nederlands

Dringende oproep voor de Support!
We hebben al een paar weken geleden meldde over. De jonge woonde in Nederland. Meer informatie, zie ook de voorbeeldbrief.
Het is een noodgeval! We vragen om dringende ondersteunen deze actie. Het gaat over een mensenleven!

پارسی

درخواست فوری برای پشتیبانی.
ما قبلا از در این رابطه گزارش کرده ایم. مرد جوانی که در آن در زمان در هلند زندگی می کرد. برای اطلاعات بیشتر به نامه ای از نمونه ضمیمه شده مراجعه کنید.
این یک اورژانس است! ما درخواست حمایت فوری شما از این کمپین را داریم. این زندگی یک انسان است!

Türk

Destek için Acil Çağrı!
Zaten hakkında birkaç hafta önce bildirmiştir. Genç Hollanda’da yaşadı. Daha fazla bilgi, örnek mektup bakın.
Acil bir durum! Biz acil destek için bu eylem isteyin. Bir ömür boyu ile ilgilidir!

العربیه

دعوة عاجلة للدعم!
أبلغت بالفعل عن بضعة أسابيع. عاش الشباب في هولندا. لمزيد من المعلومات ، انظر الرسالة العينة.
انها حالة طوارئ! نطلب الدعم الفوري لهذا الإجراء. يرتبط مدى الحياة!

THE ACTION

Letter to the Secretary of State for the Home Department – Rt. Hon. Theresa May MP.
Downloadable and printable from: http://cl.ly/3p2p34400w2V0q2q3 E0w

Bearing your signature, this must be sent to:
Fax: +44 (0) 20 7035 4745
Email: public.enquiries@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk
or the address given within the letter.

Letter to the constituency member of parliament – Mr John McDonnell MP.
Downloadable and printable form: http://cl.ly/3v3N3w0Y3p2u1S1H1 L21

Bearing your signature, this must be sent to:
Fax: +44 (0)20 8569 0109
Email: mcdonnellj@parliament.uk
or the address given within the letter.

Please Note that you do not need to be a resident or a citizen of the United Kingdom in order to do take part.

For further information, visit Amin’s Campaign Facebook® page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Amins-Campaign/215730475142387?sk=wall

Nima is alive…

  • I contacted Bahrami Hospital and tried to get in touch with the head of Accident and Emergency, Dr Dariush Fahimi, he was apparently in holiday, or so was I told. I then attempted to speak to the head of Paediatric Surgeons, Dr Hooshang Pourang, he was not available (no one answered). I then tried to speak to the social worker of the hospital, no luck in this one as well. I have a feeling that they may not be answering me because I’m calling from England and it is regarding a sensitive case.
  • I tried to call UNICEF – Tehran. No one took my call.
  • I called Jame Jam News Paper in Tehran, spoke to the Public Relations department. They guy suggested that I should call back in the afternoon to talk to the relevant group (Incidents). Which I shall do.
  • I spoke to Supporting Children of Iran Association NGO, the social worker was not available, but the person in charge there took my details and said I will be contacted as soon as she becomes available (tomorrow). She couldn’t confirm that whether it was Nima or not. Apparently, their social worker also knows what Nima’s family name is/was.
  • I just managed to speak to UNICEF – Tehran, department of Public Relations. She said we do not work on case specific matters in Iran. Our services are limited to provide the governmental and nongovernmental organisations with specialised trainings in child safeguarding and recognition of abuse. It is not our area of expertise to deal with abuse cases. At the most, we may condemn a case and request pursuance, but that is as far is it may go. She also recommended an NGO to me and suggested that they were dealing with Nima’s case and held some training sessions for Nima’s mother at the time. The name of this NGO is Mehrafarin.
  • I spoke to the person in charge in Mehrafarin Charitable NGO. They confirmed that they were in direct contact with Nima’s family. And they confirmed that Nima is alive and rejected the relevancy of that news to Nima. But to reassure me, she said that she will contact Nima’s family again and get back to me. She also mentioned that she will pursue Mohammad Pooya’s case and report back to me. They are aware of Nima’s family name, and they will inform us of it at the next stage. They also confirmed that child’s first name is Nima (and that is the correct name).
  • I spoke to Jame Jam, department of incidents, the guy didn’t even let me finish. He said: I’m sorry sir, we cannot provide you with any further information. All the information that we had were those published within the news paper. Good-bye! How dare they call themselves journalists.

Sleep well, little angel…

This morning, I received a link from one of my colleagues in “Save Nima” campaign.

I failed, and I had never failed like this before, ever in my life.

HRANA News Agency : “On Wednesday, July 20, 2011, Mohammad Pooya who was a victim of child abuse succumbed to his wounds and died in Tehran’s Bahrami Hospital.

According to a report by Jame Jam Newspaper, Mohammad Pooya’s family took him to the hospital claiming that their four year old son became unconscious after using crack cocaine.Hospital staff began their efforts to save Mohammad’s life right away until it became known that this child was the same victim who was brought to the hospital in mid March. During that visit, the family also claimed that their son had used crack cocaine, and after a few days at the hospital, Mohammad was released to his family’s custody by court order.

This time, however, the parents were arrested and interrogated to determine the facts. During the questioning, Mohammad’s parents blamed each other for the accident until his mother told the authorities that her husband was a drug addict who force-fed Mohammad crack cocaine in order to calm him down before the father could use drugs with his friends.

Because of the statements made by Mohammad’s mother, both parents were locked up behind bars, and Mohammad’s body was transferred to the coroner’s office for further investigations.

Since last month, Mohammad Pooya is the third victim of child abuse who has died. Two other children, Barbad and Parsa, died earlier.

I would like to thank my great colleagues in this campaign:
Anette Meyer
Lina Werme
Josefine Sjoqvist
Bahman Moradian Pey
.
Members of Amnesty International in Sheffield, UK.
Human Rights activists in Sweden, Norway, the Netherlands, France, Germany, the US, India, Turkey and Iran.
.
May your rest in peace, little angel. At least you won’t suffer anymore…
We failed, but this is not the end… We shall carry on!
.
Save Nima campaign on Facebook®: http://www.facebook.com/save.nima

Incidents in Norway

I wish to convey my profound sympathy on the incidents in Norway and express my deepest condolences to the citizens of the country, and the victims of these terrorist attacks. 

I strongly condemn these attacks and demand prosecution for all those responsible for it, at any cost.
-May they rest in peace.

What a religion!

CONTAINS STRONG LANGUAGE AND SEXUALLY SUGGESTIVE MATERIALS, NOT SUITABLE FOR INDIVIDUALS UNDER THE AGE OF 18.

This is the result of extremism. A religion in which the homosexuals must be, and are being executed, you see this:

Pedophiles are allowed to do whatever they want, and there is nothing to stop them. Such phenomena is widely observed within the Islamic countries (Based upon the Human Rights Watch reports and UNICEF). Whereas a child is considered as a property of his/her father (based on the Islamic rules), child abuse is of no meaning in these countries. The prosecutors normally don’t take any actions unless otherwise requested by the father.

Sheffield says no cuts to free advice

LegalAidEvent31LegalAidEvent1LegalAidEvent2LegalAidEvent3LegalAidEvent4
LegalAidEvent5LegalAidEvent6LegalAidEvent7LegalAidEvent8LegalAidEvent9
LegalAidEvent10LegalAidEvent11LegalAidEvent12LegalAidEvent13LegalAidEvent14
LegalAidEvent16LegalAidEvent17

FULL SET: Sheffield says no cuts to free advice, a set on Flickr.

Via Flickr:
Sheffield protest againts cuts to the budget of the Legal Aid services in the UK

Attendees:

Right Honourable David Blunckett: Member of the Parliament from the Labour Party – Former Home Secretary, Former Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Former Secretery of State for Education and Employment

Councillor Jillian Creasy: Councillor Central Ward in Sheffield from Green Party

Carita Thomas: Young Legal Aid Lawters, Immigration & Civil Liberties solicitor, Howells Firm

Christopher Cole: ILPA Yorkshire and North East Co-convenor, Partner Cole & Yousif Solicitors

Douglas Johnson: Sheffield Law Centre, Disability and Housing Advisor