I'm happy to carry out a request from this campaign to publicise their case. Below is an extract from a press release advertising a press conference that has now happened. This case is, however, still ongoing, and your support would be most appreciated.
HOME OFFICE CONTRADICTS GOVERNMENT MINISTER HAZEL BLEARS.
LATEST REJECTION FROM HOME OFFICE INSISTS DISABLED CHILDREN ARE HEALTHY
Samina Altaf and her children have just received a letter from the Home Office turning down their application to remain in this country. They repeat the adjudicators claim that Aqsa is not ‘completely disabled’ and that this is “an attempt to embellish her claim and it does not reflect the true situation.”
The true situation is that the Home Office have not conducted one medical examination of their own. On the other hand the family’s representatives have submitted numerous medical reports to substantiate the claim. If returned to Pakistan the family would suffer violence because of their disability.
Who would you believe?
The Home Office or the doctors and social workers at Booth Hall Children’s Hospital, Bury Social Services, Salford Social Services, and Community Paediatricians, who have all written reports that have been sent to the Home Office.
Hazel Blears, who has met Samina and the children and knows her situation, represents a government that says it is committed to tackling disability discrimination and yet discriminates against the disabled.
- What does ‘completely disabled’ mean?
- What kind of prejudice is the Home Office guilty of?
- A wrong is being committed here against Samina and her family.
For more information contact:
- Samina Altaf 07940 331 028
- Denise McDowell 07834 023 146
- David Pountney, Bury Law Centre, 0161 272 0666
Samina Altaf and her two children Aqsa and Sumama fled Pakistan in May 2004 to escape domestic abuse. All three are disabled with severe rickets and are receiving medical support in this country. Nonetheless the Home Office want to deport the family. Their Home Office reference number is A1233290.
Their case has already received local and national press coverage in the Salford Advertiser, the Manchester Evening News, the Guardian, BBC Radio and Granada TV.
Hazel Blears is the family’s MP. Having personally met with Samina and Aqsa she is in no doubt as to the severity of their disabilities. Aqsa in particular has severe difficulties and uses a wheelchair to get around school. She has transport provided by Salford Education Authority to get her to school and back. Social Services assessment reports states that ‘Aqsa is quite severely disabled with rickets and requires a disability social worker to assess her and the family’s needs’. Both children are receiving treatment through Booth Hall Children’s Hospital and Aqsa is waiting to hear about her admission for major surgery.
Many people have pledged their support for the family and include her lawyer David Pountney at Bury Law Centre, the Headteacher of St Sebastians school where Sumama is a pupil, Pamela Thompson, Aqsa’s teacher at Abraham Moss, the doctors at Booth Hall, and members of the local community in Salford. Julie Hesmondhalgh (Haley from Coronation Street) is one of the main supporters of Samina’s campaign and has spoken at public meetings in support of the families right to remain in this country.