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