This blog post is part of a series leading up to our Age Assessment Guides online launch event on September 9th 2020 for the Young People’s Guides to Age Assessments.

On the 9th of September, we’re having an online launch. We’ll be publishing our four new guides to the Age Assessment process.

You can find more details about those materials below, which will be available on our website from the launch date. For the launch, we’ll be streaming a discussion between GMIAU’s Laura and Amanda, including videos and voice recordings from young people and adults who have experienced the process.

Where Live-stream on YouTube Facebook view new page

In advance of the event we’re also running a series of blogs on age assessments – from young people and other practitioners, including The Children’s Society and Refugee Council.

By young people, for young people

Imagine you’re a teenager. You suddenly have to leave your home, your family and your friends. You arrive in the UK seeking safety but you have no documents to prove who you are and how old you are – these simply didn’t exist in your country. The adults who are asking you lots of questions tell you they don’t believe your age; they think you are an adult.

This is the situation many of the members of our All4One youth support group encountered on arrival in the UK. They found the process extremely difficult and often traumatic. Some of them were moved around the country, made to live with adults or even detained. As it became apparent that a lot of young people were going through this process and not always able to access support, the young people decided they wanted to do something to help.

With help from staff at GMIAU and the pro bono support of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, this Guide has been produced by young people who have had their ages disputed to help other young people going through the same. It contains information about what to expect, who is who, where to get help and advice for how to cope with the process.

They have also created advice sheets for Social Workers, Appropriate Adults and Interpreters – the key people present during an age assessment session.

The launch

As well as launching these guides on our website, we’ll be streaming a virtual discussion about the story and content of the guides. You’ll hear from:

  • Amanda, GMIAU’s Policy Officer
  • Laura, our Public Law Solicitor who helped the young people put the guides together
  • Two young people who GMIAU supported through the age assessment process
  • Halima, a foster carer
  • Burhan, an interpreter
  • Maria, a social worker with GMIAU
  • Vijay, a barrister.

We hope we’ll see you there!