Baljeet founded MiCLU and served as its director from 2012 until 2019. She is recognised as one of the UK’s leading experts on children’s rights in the field of asylum and immigration law. Baljeet qualified as a solicitor at Wilsons LLP in 2008 having worked in the voluntary sector for a number of years with a background in youth work. Baljeet later joined Refugee Legal Centre (RLC – later known as Refugee and Migrant Justice) to develop and design the UK’s first children’s rights programme for migrant and refugee children and support the work of the Immigration Law Practitioners’ Association (ILPA) in establishing the UK’s first national training programme on refugee children’s rights and then co-directed the Refugee Children’s Rights Project (RCRP) a partnership between Islington Law Centre and Coram.
Building on the work of RMJ, the RCRP combined strategic litigation with rights-based policy advocacy to promote and advocate for children’s rights within UK immigration and care systems. MiCLU was formally established in 2012 with legacy funding awarded by the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund (DPWMF) to take forward this work.
Baljeet has contributed to a number of legal publications and delivered child-rights based legal and policy training to lawyers, NGOs, statutory agencies and children’s charities in the UK and the EU. She was the founder and legal expert of the Law Centre Network’s Principles to Practice project – a socio-legal research project involving 18 Law Centres across the UK evaluating UK process, practice and decision-making in cases involving unaccompanied asylum seeking children. She was awarded the Young Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year in 2011 and appointed a 2014 Clore Social Leadership fellow and 2016 Vital Voices global leadership fellow.