PRESS RELEASE

PRESS RELEASE

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LEGAL LIFELINES
23 SEPTEMBER 2020

Criminal Lawyer sets up new knowledge hub ‘Legal Lifelines’ aimed at supporting BAME communities

Criminal Lawyer, Michael Herford has set up a grass roots initiative called Legal Lifelines in response to the Black Lives Matter and effects of Covid19. The platform which will serve as a knowledge hub for the community with it’s inaugural webinar launching on Sat 26 Sep from 3pm via Webinar with Michael in Conversation with Jo Sidhu QC, Criminal Barrister and Vice Chair of the Criminal Bar Association and Criminal Barrister Abimbola John- son, A Diversity Legal awards rising star & finalist in the Black British Business Awards both of 25 Bedford Row. The event will also be joined by Sayce Holmes- Lewis, Founder and CEO of Mentivity, a mentoring organisation and alternative educational provision that provides aspirational support for young people, schools and parents and Rita D’Alton-Harrison, is a senior academic and senior lecturer in Criminology and Law at Royal Holloway Univerity of London.

The discussion will focus on the disproportionate use of stop & search on the BAME com- munity and the unique Legal Lifelines Stop & Search App followed by a Q & A session.

STOP & SEARCH APP:

The Legal Lifelines Stop & Search App has a unique function that allows users to record their interaction with police and safely and securely store the footage using military grade encryption. Should the user be arrested, they can immediately contact elite legal advice from one of the Legal Lifelines team.

LEGAL LIFELINES:

We are aimed at supporting those from BAME communities and empowering them with knowledge of their legal rights and other issues that affect the community through a groundbreaking series of legal articles, webinars and other resources to support anyone who is at risk of coming into contact with the Criminal Justice System.

The collaborative effort will bring to the fore the most skilled lawyers in the country combined with the determined efforts of the nation’s charity and entertainment sectors to provide com- munities nationwide access to the best legal advice on issues affecting them on a day to day basis.

Founder of Legal Lifelines Michael Herford says: “We know that BAME people as well as minority communities such as travellers are likely to experience disproportionately negative outcomes at work, or when engaging with the authorities. We aim to empower them with the knowledge they need to protect themselves by bringing them critical information on legal is- sues that affect them such as Stop and Search, County Lines, Human Slavery and Protest Law.

I’ll be presenting a Webinar Programme with some of the best legal minds in the sector as well as engaging with young people, charities and BAME community members to under- stand what their needs are and how best to support them.

Michael, 38 was born in Bristol to a father of Black Caribbean heritage and a White English mother. Michael has been self employed for 8 of the 10 years he has worked as a Criminal Law practitioner, this year being recognised in the prestigious Legal 500 as: “a truly excellent solicitor: charismatic, energetic and engaging”. He said:

“I had no help or connections and was often told I would not succeed and was not able to work in a challenging profession such as law. I need to work with my community to encour- age young people to come forward and to believe they can have fulfilling lives as members of this society. Despite the challenges, together, we can do it! In community, we achieve unity, and in unity, we have strength. This initiative will change many lives and I believe will help save lives too.”

Michael added: “I myself have been stopped and searched and understand personally, how degrading and scary it can be when protocols are not followed by those conducting the search and other invasive operations. The webinar is the first in a series of providing tools of empowerment to the community we proudly want to serve.”

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LEGAL LIFELINES

To register for the Webinar please see: https://legallifelines.co.uk/events-webinars/

For more information on Legal LifeLines please see: https://legallifelines.co.uk

Jo Sidhu QC says “ I am delighted to take part in the Launch of Legal Lifelines. Having come from a South Asian background and growing up in Southall I understand how import- ant it is to make sure messaging cuts through to the hard to reach communities.”

James Jeffries, CEO of London Rock, the first corporate sponsor of the initiative, said: “We are proud to play our part in the Legal LifeLines exciting and innovative educational series, which will build a better future for everyone.”

Sayce Holmes-Lewis, Founder and CEO of Mentivity who’s stop and search incident video went viral earlier this year said: “My life is dedicated to supporting and empowering our community, especially our youth. I am seeing amazing engagement from the community and encouraging results. I have been the vicim of an invasive stop and search by police which was the result of racial profiling. I want to support the community in any way I can. The Stop & Search webinar and Stop & Search App by Legal Lifelines is very necessary and will greatly empower the community that I am part of and have dedicated my life to supporting and empowering.”

Free and independent legal advice

You will never be penalised for asking for legal advice. It is your legal right and it is free of charge.

Remember: the law is complex and it never hurts to get expert advice, even if you are sure you have done nothing wrong.

Ask for Michael Herford and he, or one of his specialist team will provide you with a Legal LifeLine when you need it most.

DOWNLOAD OUR FREE STOP AND SEARCH APP - SCAN WITH YOUR PHONE CAMERA, OR CLICK THE APP STORE LINK