The Home Office has made no attempt to inform people deported to Commonwealth countries that the Windrush taskforce exists, prompting concerns that people who were wrongly removed do not know they can have their cases looked into.
The immigration minister admitted the department had made “no specific attempt” to inform 49 people confirmed to have been removed to Nigeria and Ghana last year that the Windrush settlement scheme had been established.
Caroline Nokes said individuals who believe they qualify under the Windrush criteria could access the relevant information on the government website, saying it was regularly updated with information about how to apply for status.
Campaigners said it was “ridiculous” to expect people who had been wrongly deported to visit the government’s website without being notified about it, and accused ministers of having “learnt nothing” from the Windrush crisis.
People from Nigeria and Ghana are among the Commonwealth nationalities that have been caught up in the scandal, which has seen people who were invited from former British colonies to live and work in the UK after the Second World War targeted by immigration enforcement despite living in the country for decades.
The Independent recently revealed that nearly half of overseas enquiries to the government’s Windrush taskforce are from countries outside the Caribbean, indicating that the immigration issues span beyond the West Indies.
Green Party MP Caroline Lucas, who obtained the response from Ms Nokes in a written question, said: “It doesn’t seem much to ask for the government to tell people they’ve kicked out of the country that the Windrush taskforce exists.
“Ministers know their treatment of the Windrush generation is a national disgrace. That they haven’t bothered to contact people who’ve been deported suggests the government hasn’t learnt anything from the public backlash against its hostile environment.” Read more
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