British PM says 'Windrush generation' migrants are 'part of us'

Clay Curtis
April 19, 2018

At hastily-arranged Downing Street talks with 12 heads of government on the margins of a Commonwealth summit, the Prime Minister said she was "genuinely sorry" for the anxiety that had been caused.

Thousands of descendants of the Windrush generation whose parents were invited to live in Britain in the 1940s have been #Living In Fear of deportation.

"They've got children and grandchildren here".

These people came over from 1948 during the same big waves of emigration from Ireland and worked on the same buses and railways, in the same NHS hospitals and the same auto and food factories, the same building sites as the Irish.

Because many were born in countries that were still colonies, they were legally British and granted leave to stay indefinitely. Their children went to the same schools. Majority are from Jamaica and India, but there are no concrete statistics.

This week, after 10 Downing Street initially refused to discuss the matter with the heads of government of the Commonwealth nations whose immigrants are most affected, a government immigration minister appeared to concede that legitimate United Kingdom residents have already been wrongly deported "in error". The truth is that she has said there has been a policy change, that this was an unintended effect.

Who are the Windrush generation?

"Due to the rollout of very intrusive and harsh immigration checks across everyday life, people are now finding themselves in situations where they are quite heavily penalised for not having that documentation", said Satbir Singh, chief executive of the Joint Council for Welfare of Immigrants.

LabourList has more readers than ever before - but we need your support. Because of people who came here a long time and never bothered to get passports or other documents but have been British citizens in reality for decades.

Abbott has now called on Amber Rudd - who has so far distanced herself from her own department, telling MPs "the Home Office has become too concerned with policy and strategy and sometimes lost sight of the individual" - to "consider her position". "This is about individuals".

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"What the prime minister said was that the decision was taken in 2009 when there was a Labour government", her spokesman told reporters, adding that it had been an operational decision by the UK Border Agency.

THE Home Office must review hundreds of deportations made since 2014 over the Windrush scandal, an MP says.

"She's aware that many people are unlikely to have documents that are over 40 years old and she is clear that no one with the right to be here will be made to leave".

"The prime minister must act urgently to halt this deportation and all other Windrush deportations".

"We have no information; we do not know of any cases where somebody has been deported who is in this category", Cabinet Office Minister David Lidington said on Tuesday.

Her revelation was met with gasps and shouts from the Tory benches who urged Labour to "apologise" after they had blamed Mrs May for the destruction of the cards, which happened in 2010 when she was Home Secretary.

Holness' response came on the heels of the matter being discussed in the UK Parliament by the Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, and during a meeting with British Prime Minister Theresa May in London.

In fact, people from the West Indies had to produce records proving their citizenship, which many of them were unable to do because they had never been issued with adequate paperwork by the Home Office in the first instance.

But in 2012 Theresa May, then the home secretary, introduced a number of policies to create a "hostile environment" for illegal migrants.

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