Rother Valley MP says Windrush generation who were wrongly deported must be allowed back

Sir Kevin Barron
Sir Kevin Barron

Many people have heard of the Windrush generation, which refers not only to the 1,000 people who arrived on the Windrush in 1948, but to all the people from the Commonwealth who entered this country between 1948 and 1973, writes Sir Kevin Barron.

I believe they were treated shamefully after a lifetime of working hard, paying their taxes, bringing up their families and contributing to society.

Unfortunately, many members of the Windrush generation were left facing uncertainty about their legal status in the UK.

The Government conducted a historical review of individuals of Caribbean Commonwealth nationality who were born before 1973 and who have been removed or detained by the Home Office since 2002 and found that 83 people were wrongfully deported.

I believe the Government must invite anyone who has been deported in error back to the UK immediately as they were always British citizens.

I also note that a Public Accounts Committee report earlier this year recommended the Home Office should extend its historical review to include other Commonwealth nationals who may have been wrongfully detained, removed or sanctioned.

It is my view that this whole situation is a direct consequence of the hostile environment policy, and I am calling for an end to this approach for good.

The Government has set up the Windrush Scheme to allow Common-wealth citizens who were settled in the UK before 1973 to apply to become British citizens, without fees or the requirement to carry out tests on knowledge of language and life in the UK.

I hope the Home Secretary will commit to compensating victims in a way that properly reflects the actual costs and the damage caused to their family lives.

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