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Hillsborough solicitor to be granted Freedom of Liverpool after decades of fighting for justice

2 months ago

Hillsborough solicitor to be granted Freedom of Liverpool after decades of fighting for justice
Picture by Gareth Jones

Liverpool solicitor Elkan Abrahamson is to be officially granted Freedom of Liverpool for his achievements in championing social justice.

Elkan, who represented many of the families of those killed in the Hillsborough disaster, will receive the Freedom of Liverpool at a ceremony on 12 April.

Elkan, head of major inquiries at Broudie Jackson Canter, is receiving the city’s highest civic honour because he ‘has always championed the marginalised, taken on the establishment and been at the centre of Liverpool’s most defining moments including the Toxteth uprising and the Hillsborough disaster’, according to Cllr Liam Robinson, the leader of Liverpool City Council.

Elkan said: “I am incredibly proud to receive this honour. It means so much more to me than any national award as Liverpool is my city. It is where I was born and bred so to get this accolade means a great deal.”

Elkan has played an instrumental role in getting justice for citizens of Liverpool and beyond for over 40 years, from those wrongly arrested in disturbances following the Toxteth uprisings, the families impacted by the Birmingham pub bombings and Manchester Arena bombing, and fighting for voting rights for prisoners.

Elkan Abrahamson to be awarded Freedom of Liverpool

He represented 20 families during the Hillsborough Inquest after being approached by Anne Williams, who lost her 15-year-old son Kevin in the disaster and was a key member of the legal team that successfully argued that the 97 victims were unlawfully killed. He is continuing to push for the passing of a ‘Hillsborough Law’, which would create a legal duty of candour on public authorities and officials to tell the truth and proactively cooperate with official investigations and inquiries.  The Labour Party have committed to making this law if they come win the next general election.

Elkan is also currently working with the Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice Group in the Covid Inquiry.

He said: “The two things I am probably most proud of which helped the people of Liverpool are representing the families of those killed at Hillsborough and the fighting for justice after the Toxteth riots. With Hillsborough, the families fought so long to get the truth acknowledged and just   wanted a public accounting for the deaths of their loved ones.

“We were in a bubble for two years when the inquests were ongoing and it was only after the verdicts that I realised how much it affected the whole city and how what we had achieved impacted the city as a whole.

“With Toxteth we achieved a sea change in attitudes whereby young black people suddenly realised that they could stand up to police racism and their voices would be heard. I am very proud that I have been able to assist so many in the city to get justice.”

Elkan joins a remarkable list of people previously awarded the Freedom of Liverpool honour, from Liverpool Football Club’s manager, Jurgen Klopp, to Henry Tate, the founder of the Tate Gallery. The 97 individuals that tragically lost their lives in the Hillsborough Disaster were also posthumously awarded the Freedom of Liverpool honour.

Elkan will be officially granted Freedom of Liverpool at the city’s Town Hall on 12 April.

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