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Launch of new Education Kit on Immigration Law

Hon Clayton Cosgrove
MP for Waimakariri
Minister for Building Issues
Minister of Statistics
Associate Minister of Finance
Associate Minister of Justice
Associate Minister of Immigration

5 April 2006 Media Statement

Launch of new Education Kit on Immigration Law

Hon Clayton Cosgrove, Associate Minister of Justice and Associate Minister of Immigration, has today launched an education kit on immigration law.

The kit has been produced by the Legal Services Agency as part of its education and development work.

It contains material for seminars on immigration law and is designed for community groups that provide information and support to people with immigration law issues.

"It is important that community service providers can give accurate legal information on immigration matters, so by making this resource available, the Agency is giving them real support," says Mr Cosgrove.

"There is also a real demand for this kind of resource, given the hundreds of thousands of people who apply to work, study, reside or visit New Zealand each year," he says. "Often these people are unfamiliar with New Zealand's way of life and its laws, and need information on immigration law. The kit is an important initiative in ensuring the system is understandable and accessible."

The Department of Labour legal team provided legal expertise and feedback as the kit was developed.

"This is a good example of where different agencies can work together to make sure the needs of the community are met,” says Mr Cosgrove.
The target users of the kit are community law centres, Citizens Advice Bureau and refugee and migrant service organisations.

These organisations were involved in the consulting and trialling phase of the kit's development, and are now taking part in its distribution roll out.

The kit is presented in modular form, with lessons and case studies included. It contains an overview of immigration law and sections on visas, temporary permits, residence, unlawful status and removal from NZ, deportation and refugees. Its loose-leaf format allows it to be updated to reflect changes in legislation.

Mr Cosgrove says the kit is neither a substitute for legal advice from a lawyer nor a training tool for people who want to become specialist immigration consultants.
"But what the kit does provide people with is information on the correct legal procedures for achieving their immigration goals. It can also increase understanding about what their particular immigration status means for them."
Introductory sessions about the kit will be held in central and south Auckland next week, with full training sessions to follow in Auckland and Wellington over the coming months. Further sessions around the country, including the South Island, are also being planned.

The kit is available through the Legal Services Agency's head office in Wellington for $70, plus GST.

The Immigration Law Kit is the fourth in an on-going series produced by the Legal Services Agency, which already includes:
. Enduring Power of Attorney
. Legal Aid and other legal assistance
. Domestic Violence and Harassment Acts.

The content for a kit on ACC is being finalised at present.


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