Some further background on this topic can be found here.
In light of the recent threats of deportation facing individuals who arrived in the UK from Commonwealth Caribbean countries, critics have called on the Home Office to assess and adjust their policies towards the Windrush generation.
Individuals who came to the UK from Commonwealth Caribbean countries between 1948 and 1971 are entitled to indefinite leave to remain pursuant to the provisions of the 1971 Immigration Act. Many individuals did not receive any official paperwork and now find themselves, over 40 years later, unable to prove when they arrived in the UK. Some were just children at the time and entered the UK on their parents' passports meaning that they have no records to evidence their arrival.
A large number of people have been affected, losing access to healthcare, pensions, jobs and benefits due to the inability to prove their right to be in the UK.
The Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, faced fierce criticism in the House of Commons this week, with Ms Rudd conceding, “some of the way they have been treated has been wrong, has been appalling, and I am sorry”. Ms Rudd has said that she will meet with High Commissioners from the Caribbean in order to “find out if there are any such people who have been removed”.
After her team originally refused a meeting with Caribbean leaders, the Prime Minister, Theresa May, apologised to Caribbean heads of government for the treatment of the Windrush generation at a meeting yesterday. She said, “I take this issue very seriously. The Home Secretary apologised in the House of Commons for any anxiety caused. And I want to apologise to you today. Because we are genuinely sorry for any anxiety that has been caused”.
It was announced by Amber Rudd that a new Home Office team has been established to ensure that Windrush-era individuals and other Commonwealth-born individuals who have been long-term UK residents receive their paperwork and have their immigration status confirmed within two weeks.
Theresa May has said that anyone who has lost their job, pension or access to benefits as a result of this scandal or had to spend money seeking legal advice will receive compensation.
Gherson are experts in dealing with UK immigration matters. Should you or your family members wish to speak to a member of our team please do not hesitate to contact us.
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