Monday, 8 November 2010

Who can work in the United Kingdom?

Posted on November 2, 2010 by Action for Social Integration

If you are a British National Citizen or a Citizen from the EU then you are automatically eligible to work without a work permit. For Citizens of all other countries, you must have a work permit. For Citizens of all other countries, you must have a work permit which your employer has a duty to request.  The period of validity and the terms of the work permit given will depend on the type of work that the citizen is being employed to do.  There are various categories and requirements to fulfil which you must fall within to work within the United Kingdom.  The categories are as follows; (i) Highly skilled workers, investors and entrepreneurs, (ii) Sponsored skilled workers (iii) Temporary workers (iv) Other Categories (v) European Economic Area and Swiss nationals (vi) Turkish Citizens (vii) UK Ancestry.

If you fall within one of the above categories or you are unsure which category is most suitable, then you can contact us, or look at any of the listed websites below:

Immigration Advice

Category Archives: Immigration Advice

Family Reunion for Asylum seekers
Posted on November 2 by Action for Social Integration

If you have claimed Asylum here in the United Kingdom or you are under Humanitarian protection, you are more than likely to want to be reunited with your family members who have been left behind in the country you left.
·         The UK Border Agency has a Family Reunion Programme where those members whom were part of the family unit before you got to the United Kingdom can join you here under this programme.
·         The current law now states that these members (the spouse, civil partner or unmarried/same-sex partner plus any children under 18) take a English language test to become apart of the Community.
·         If you are facing any difficult situations with your family being separated from yourself, then please come in and get advice on your case.

Immigration Advice

Category Archives: Immigration  Advice
Posted on October 30 by Action for Social Integration

If you or somebody you know has been granted ‘limited leave to remain’ as you are a refugee or migrant that has been granted humanitarian protection, then you will be aware that you are granted this for a period of five years only.  If this period of time is due to expire and you or somebody else still requires Humanitarian protection, then you must make an application for permission to settle in the United Kingdom by applying for ’Indefinite leave to remain’ before your current ’limited leave to remain’ application expires. 
If you require any assistance in application forms or advice within this sector, then you may ask us, or you can also see guidance notes on
This article has been published in Issue 1 of Action for Social Integration’s Community Advice E-Newsletter, October 2010

Friday, 5 November 2010

Adults often tend to think of learning as an activity reserved strictly to youngsters. However, especially in the present economic environment, it is more essential than ever that one commits to upgrading, expanding and diversifying their professional skills in order to gain competitive advantage in the labour market and secure employment.
It is unfortunate that an increasing number of adults avoid the opportunity to receive further training due primarily to financial concerns. This is why, this article will bring to your attention, both, the various grant schemes for adult learners which you can access as well as local opportunities for adult learning.

Adult Learning Grant

The Adult Learning Grant enables adults in learning to receive up to £30 a week (£1000 a year) to help them with covering learning costs, including travel, study materials and other costs. This scheme gives you the freedom to choose between a wide range of qualifications: BTECs, NVQs, GCSEs, A-levels) as long as the course you take leads you to your first full Level 2 or first full Level 3 qualification (to check if your course is classes as “full” Level 2 or 3 qualification, contact the Careers Advice Service on 0800 100 900).  To be eligible for this scheme, you need to be 19 or over and you must be getting under £19 573 a year if single/£30 810 if in a couple. You should not be getting Job Seeker`s Allowance.
To see how this scheme relates to other benefits and what benefits it could be combined with click here.  
To discuss your choice of training/learning and enquiry further about the grant, fill in the following Free Call Back form and you will be called by an experienced Learning Adviser.

Fifty Plus In-Work Training grant

It is not impossible that you need to start a new job or return to employment at the age of 50. This grant, which could provide you with up to £1500, will help you to cover any work-related training costs for upgrading your professional skills (for example, updating your industry knowledge, improving your computer skills or other professional skills).   You will qualify for this grant if you are currently working as employee or self-employed person, you have previously claimed at least one of the following benefits for at least 26 months but are no longer claiming them and were aged 50 or over when you stopped claiming: Jobseeker`s Allowance, Incapacity Benefit, Employment and Support Allowance, Income Support, Severe Disablement Allowance, Pension Credit, Bereavement Allowance, Jobcentre Plus Allowance Payments, Auto Credits or National Insurance Credits. You will only qualify for the grant if you apply within 52 weeks of stopping to get the relevant benefit. To learn more and apply for this grant, please contact your local Jobcentre Plus office.

Horizons Education Fund

The Horizons Education Fund aims to support lone parents who have the motivation, determination and ability to improve their employment prospects. It provides support and advice on money matters and getting back to work, as well as grants towards education and training costs.
Grants amount to up to £1,500 towards course expenses for any courses where the applicant can demonstrate that study will improve employment prospects and they meet all the eligibility criteria below. For application guidelines please follow this link.

What Job Coaching services are available locally? 

Orion Pax Employment (Enfield & Haringey)
At Orion Pax Employment you can find a team of one-to-one job coaches and back-to-work advisers which can provide free support and advice so that you can successfully  apply for job vacancies. The agency also offers free ESOL courses for refugees and asylum seekers. To register, please call 020 8803 2611 (Enfield) and 020 8808 7776 (Tottenham), or email:

KIS trainingLocated in Haringey, KIS Training offer free impartial advice on adult training courses, further and higher education, personal development and job opportunities. To make an appointment, please call 020 8275 4230 or email
Address: Sentinel House, 1 Ashley Road, Tottenham Hale, London N17 9LP

This article has been published in Issue 4 of Action for Social Integration’s Community Advice E-Newsletter, July 19th 2010

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Health Advice

To help them access the help which is available through local and national organisations, the Department of Health has launched an online portal dedicated exclusively to the needs of disabled people. To access the Depatment of Health`s “Practical Guide for Disabled People or Carers”, please follow this link.
An area which could be particularly problematic for disabled people is employment. While there is a list of organisations and initiatives launched to assist people with disabilities in employment and link them to job opportunities, self-employment is another option worth considering.

What support is available to disabled people who consider starting up their own business and becoming self-employed?

Income Tax Allowance: on expenses including travel, subscriptions to magazines, heating and lighting the workplace in your home. If you have a disability and usually work 16 hours or more a week, you may be able to get extra tax credits. The disability must be one that makes it hard for you to get a job and you must be receiving, or have recently received, a qualifying sickness or disability-related benefit. To find out how to get extra tax credits, visit the HM Revenue and Customs website.

The Enterprise Finance Guarantee (EFG): the government`s guaranteed lending scheme intended to help smaller viable businesses who may be struggling to secure finance, by facilitating bank loans of between £1,000 and £1 million. To find out additional information please following this link.

Business Start-up Allowance from some Learning and Skills Councils (LSC) in England and The National Council for Education and Training for Wales or Local Enterprise Councils (LECs) in Scotland is part of a package which includes training in setting up a business and business planning.
All newly self-employed people have to register for National Insurance contributions and Income Tax. Booklet PFE1 from the Inland Revenue contains a registration form for National Insurance contributions and Income Tax. Many disabled people will not have to pay National Insurance contributions if they earn below the threshold. You will also not have to pay VAT if your annual turnover is less than a certain amount. If, however, it is above this amount, you will need to apply to Customs and Excise for VAT registration (0845 0109000). Further information is available from the Self-Employed Agency on 0845 9154515.
You can find all information necessary for setting up and developing your own business from the website of Business Link.

Where can people with disabilities find further help?

Take a look at the following booklet “Setting up in Business: A Resource Guide for Disabled People and their Advisers”. It contains practical information about tax, Access to Work Scheme, business planning, grants, finance and working from home.
You can request a copy by emailing:
Disability Charity Leonard Cheshire and Sir Stelios Hajiloannou
Run the annual Stelios Disabled Entrepreneur Award with a prize of £50 000.
You can find more information on the application procedure by visiting the organisation`s website.

Benefits Enquiry Line
for advice about all benefits and how to claim them.
Phone free: 0800 882200 (Mon-Fri 8.30-18.30, Sat 9.00-13.00);
For help filling in claim forms, phone free: 0800 441144.

Disability Benefits Helpline
Tel: 0845 7123456, for advice on Disability Living Allowance and Attendance Allowance.

Citizens Advice Bureaux (CABs)
Provides advice on a wide range of money, housing, legal and other problems. See your phone book for local numbers.

DIAL (Disability Information Advice Line)
Run mostly by disabled people. See phone book for your local DIAL or call DIAL-UK.
Tel/textphone: (01302) 310123.

Disability Rights Commission.
Helpline: 0845 7622633 (Mon-Fri 8.00-20.00);

Disabled Living Centres (DLCs)
Local centres where you can see, try out and get information and advice on equipment. See ‘Equipment and aids for daily living’ under ‘Help with everyday needs’ for a list of centres or call the Disabled Living Centres Council. Tel: (0161) 834 1044;

RADAR (The Royal Association for Disability and Rehabilitation)
Has a wide selection of helpful publications.
Tel: (020) 7250 3222
This article has been published in Issue 5 of Action for Social Integration’s Community Advice E-Newsletter, August 29th 2010

Newsletter October 2010

Monthly Archives: October 2010
Do you have ‘limited leave to remain’?
Posted on by Action for Social Integration
If you or somebody you know has been granted ‘limited leave to remain’ as you are a refugee or migrant that has been granted humanitarian protection, then you will be aware that you are granted this for a period of five years.. Continue reading →

Family Reunion for Asylum seekers
Posted on November 2 by Action for Social Integration
If you have claimed Asylum here in the United Kingdom or you are under Humanitarian protection, you are more than likely to want to be reunited with your family membersContinue reading →
Who can work in the United Kingdom?
Posted on by Action for Social Integration
If you are a British National Citizen or a Citizen from the EU then you are automatically eligible to work without a work permit. For Citizens of all other countries, you must have a work permit... Continue reading →

Domestic Violence
Posted on November 2 by Action for Social Integration
Many people may think that domestic violence only applies to Women, but Men may suffer as much as women do...  Continue reading →

Do you know about the new Equality Act 2010?
Posted on by Action for Social Integration
Under the new Equality Act 2010, all previous laws relating to Employment and Discrimination will be merged together within the Equality Act to make the law less complex and easier to understand whether you are an employer or
Continue reading →

Are you entitled to Working Tax Credits and who can apply?
Posted on November 2 by Action for Social Integration
Are you employed or self employed and work more than 16 hours per week?  If you are, you may be eligible for Working tax Credits if you are on a low income...
Continue reading →

Our Vision and Services

Our vision is of a society where no one should experience discrimination on the grounds of their mental health.

Mental health problems are extremely common across society, with one in four of us experiencing them in any year. Despite being so common, people from all communities will still experience discriminatory attitudes and behaviours that can prevent people from speaking out, seeking support and playing full and active roles in our communities. The impact of mental health stigma and discrimination will vary between communities as mental health has a cultural context that affects the way communities talk about the subject and engage with people who have mental health problems. In some cultures depression, for example, doesn't exist and in others an experience of a mental health problem can be attached to a sense of shame.

For the African and Caribbean communities a key issue is the overrepresentation of young African and Caribbean men in mental health services. Misconceptions and stereotypes have led to a perception that this group is more likely to pose a risk of violent behaviour and, as a result, they are more likely to be treated as inpatients and sectioned when compared to other groups. It is well documented that this has led to a fear of talking about mental health issues more openly and a fear of using mental health services. Research by the Race Equality Foundation (2011) also highlighted fears that discrimination against Black & Minority Ethnic (BME) communities and migrant service users will increase in the austerity climate and whilst commissioning arrangements change.

Our Services

· Provide information, advice, advocacy

· Represent diversity communities in Health Care services, policies and strategies

· Organise training in health and social care in collaboration with local colleges

· Provide human resources ( including interpreters) who are suitable to the diversity communities especially to break language and cultural barriers

· Provides domiciliary care and support

· Provide services such specialised support for people with mental health needs, including people who suffer from short-term memory problems, Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease.

· Provide visits to elderly people and help them with outings and home services

· Participate in local authority and NHS consultations , research events and programmes to voice the needs of diversity communities.

· Increase access to services and rights for disadvantaged people and the most vulnerable of our society

· Help and support unemployed people to look for work, including training and job preparation

· Provide legal advice in a range of issues from on Immigration and Asylum , welfare benefits, housing, health, education, community care, and training, employment, etc.

· Provide advice and guidance, information and practical help so that our service users can access opportunities they are entitled to

· Organise training and other community learning opportunities that provide new skills, increase confidence and motivation

· Support our service users to overcome barriers to learning, employment and training

· Provide support for young people with their education, training, confidence building, employment and social needs.

Objectives of our Diversity Living Programme:

· To promote the inclusion and participation of diversity communities* in integrated care.

· To inform policy, locally and nationally, and assisting in the formulation of effective policies, strategies and good practices in integrated care in order to contribute to improved health outcomes for the people from the diversity communities (e.g. Black and minority ethnic communities) and to ensure health services are able to meet their specific needs.

· To improve the quality of life for diversity people with disability, mental health problems and their families and carers through integrated care by providing inclusive advocacy and information.

· To provide service that enable diversity groups and individuals with disability /elderly and their carers to make the right choice for themselves and have an influence on decisions made about their future.

· To promote the rights of diversity people with disability, their families and carers and make sure their rights are safe and protected.

· To promoting access to information regarding healthcare issues and to raise awareness of the needs of diversity disabled children, young people, older people and their families.

· To promote the rights of older and disabled diversity people, helping them overcome and enable them to participate in decisions about their future

· To provide support and information to those suffering the isolation and loneliness that can be associated with disability and old age

· To fight against mental health stigma in refugee, black and minority ethnic communities and ensure no one should experience discrimination on the grounds of their mental health or disability.

*Diversity communities are older people, disabled people, Black, Asian, refugees, migrants, asylum seekers and other ethnic minorities.