An online crowdfunding campaign has raised thousands of pounds to challenge the use of children as spies by the police and other investigative agencies. Lawyers at the charity Just for Kids Law started the campaign to raise funds for a legal case against the Home Office. They are concerned that the government’s guidelines on the use of children as spies put young people in danger and are seeking a judicial review to challenge the Home Office on human rights grounds.
The campaign has already raised over £3000 of a £6000 target; however, the urgency of the fundraising goal became more apparent last week when the Home Office refused the charity’s request to proceed with the case on a cost neutral basis. This decision means that Just for Kids Law would have to cover the government’s costs if they lose the case, despite being a charity acting in the public interest.
The use of children as spies by the police and other investigative agencies has caused a great deal of controversy since it was revealed in a House of Lords debate in July. Parliamentarians and human rights groups have raised concerns about the lack of safeguards to protect young people from physical and emotional harm.
Just for Kids Law has issued the case against the government with the counsel of Caoilfhionn Gallagher QC and Sam Jacobs, both of Doughty Street Chambers.
Enver Solomon, CEO, Just for Kids Law says:
“We’ve had a good response since we launched the crowdfunding campaign but have yet to reach our target. It should be of great concern to everyone that the government is allowing children to be exploited in this way with such little regard for their safety. The refusal by the Home Office to agree to proceed with the case on a cost neutral basis makes it all the more important that we are able to raise the funds carry out a legal challenge and stand up for vulnerable young people who could be put at serious risk.”
Jonathan Karstadt: JonathanKarstadt@justforkidslaw.org | 07984 095793
Just for Kids Law is a UK charity that works with and for children and young people to hold those with power to account and fight for wider reform by providing legal representation and advice, direct advocacy and support, and campaigning to ensure children and young people in the UK have their legal rights and entitlements respected and promoted.